Sorry for the slip-up last week, punch friends! Travel and poor communication meant there was no weekend live discussion for Bellator 124 and UFC Fight Night 52, which is a shame, since they were both very solid cards, culminating in massively severe head trauma in both main events! (Burnsy note: It was Burnsy’s fault.)
Hopefully we’re back on track for this weekend’s combat sports live discussion, which is good, because there are a slew of title fights to talk about. Let’s jump into the break downs.
Bellator keeps chugging along, putting on solid shows with decent fighters, week after week. It’s not the best, and sometimes it’s the worst, but Bellator is usually good for around three decent fights between the prelims and the main card. Speaking of, the prelims, as usual, will be on Bellator.com starting at 6:00 PM ET. One of the fun things about the Bellator prelims is spotting the movie quotes that commentator Jimmy Smith drops in (Usually at the behest of @CrooklynMMA). There are actually a few fighters on the prelims I’ve heard of, like “Tiny” Joe Taimanglo, who I want to carry around in my pocket all day. There’s also Estevan Payan, who is famous for taking the loudest spinning backfist knockout ever.
The main card is on Spike TV starting at 9:00 PM ET. Things start off small, with two straight featherweight fights. Bubba Jenkins is taking on Thiago Meller, while Mike Richman and Ed West square off with each other. Both should be fun fights, though for different reasons. I expect Bubba to wrestle the mess out of Thiago, while I’m hoping for fun kickboxing betwixt Mike the Marine and Wild West. The co-main event should also be good as Polish leglock specialist Marcin Held takes on Patricky Freire in what is probably one of the last tournament finals in Bellator. The main event is a middleweight title fight between Brandon Halsey and semi-disgraced champion Alexander Shlemenko. I mean, is there any other term to describe a person that has lost a fight to Tito Ortiz in 2014?
Titan Fighting Championships is a decent C-level promotion that’s got a former UFC dude-heavy roster. The festivities will begin at 8:30 PM ET on TitanFighting.com, and the prelims are chock full of dudes I’ve never heard of. That’s not always a bad thing, but there aren’t any match ups I can get excited for. The main card is on CBS Sports at 10:00 PM ET. The co-main event is a bantamweight bout between former TUF contestant that couldn’t make weight, Anthony Gutierrez, and the ultra-lanky Walel Watson who went 1-3 in the UFC. The main event is a light heavyweight title bout between Jason Brilz and Vinny Magalhaes, who holds some notoriety as the guy that tapped Chris Weidman in a grappling competition and that’s about it.
We’ve finally got a regular card on TV and also Pay-Per-View, hooray! UFC 178 has, as have all of the autumnal cards, underwent some serious reshufflings as fighters got hurt or terribly failed drug tests, or turned out to be garbage people what do crimes. The prelims will begin on Fight Pass at 7:00 PM ET. We’ve got small-dude action as bantamweights Manny Gamburyan and Cody Donovan square off, while lightweights Jon Tuck and Kevin Lee face each other. The “regular” prelims are going to be on Fox Sports 1 at 8:00 PM ET, and there’s a whole lot of fun stuff here. John Howard versus Brian Ebersole should be a really cool Muay Thai fight, while Patrick Cote and Stephen Thompson are capable of putting on neat kickboxing stuff. The people’s main event of Dominick Cruz versus Takeya Mizugaki should also be really good and has potential bantamweight title implications.
The PPV portion of the card starts at 10:00 PM ET, and as always, don’t talk about illegal methods of watching it in our happy live discussion home, okay? The main card begins with a rad women’s bantamweight fight between Cat Zingano and Amanda Nunes, and there’s a high probability that the winner is the next challenger for Ronda Rousey. There’s also Tim Kennedy taking on Yoel Romero in what I’ve seen described as the Cuban Wrestle Crisis, so that should be neat. A featherweight grudge match between Dustin Poirier and Conor McGregor should provide a lot of fireworks, same with the lightweight contest between former WEC champ Donald Cerrone and former Bellator champ Eddie Alvarez.
The main event for UFC 178 is a flyweight title fight between Demetrious Johnson and Chris Cariaso. Johnson is pretty much the best and Cariaso is basically the best available, so I don’t expect an even contest. Even so, it should be cool to watch Johnson style on a dude for a few rounds.
Let’s have fun with these fights and chats, gang!