UFC: Khabib Nurmagomedov has stipulations for McGregor – Poirier

This weekend at UFC 254, Khabib Nurmagomedov (28-0) will be taking on Justin Gaethje (22-2) for the undisputed lightweight championship. The Eagle is looking to continue his dominance at lightweight. Gaethje is looking to pull of the biggest year of his career.

Even with his full focus on this weekend, the UFC champion couldn’t get away from questions regarding his rival Conor McGregor. McGregor has agreed to fight Dustin Poirier on January 23rd. The fight is done with just contracts needing to be signed per Dana White. 

There is the general feel that the winner of the McGregor – Poirier fight would get the next crack at the UFC lightweight championship. However, there hasn’t been a weight that has been agreed to for the potential January fight.

McGregor’s head coach hinted that the fight would take place at welterweight. That didn’t sit well with the current UFC champion. Nurmagomedov came out this week and said that the fight between the two needs to happen at lightweight.

“You have to fight at 155. If they fight at 170 or 185, this is not lightweight contender fight. If you want to fight at lightweight contender for the belt you have to fight at lightweight,” Nurmagomedov told TSN on Monday.

On the UFC champions terms

It’s worth noting that outside of the fight against Nurmagomedov, all three of McGregor’s last three UFC contest have taken place at welterweight. Even though the fighters he’s fought were both natural lightweights.

I can see where Nurmagomedov is coming. If they want a UFC title shot, they should have to fight at the weight class that they will have to fight in to win the title. However, I can also see the point from the other camps.

If McGregor pushes for 170, it goes back to the point that both fighters wouldn’t have to cut weight. Neither would deplete themselves so the UFC would get both guys at their very best. The weight cut isn’t easy for McGregor or Poirier.

Considering the trend, my guess is that the UFC does try to book McGregor – Poirier at lightweight. I know McGregor’s last few fights have been at 170, but I think the promotion will try to push to get him back at his natural weight which is at lightweight.

UFC books Angela Hill – Tecia Torres rematch (Reports)

UFC 256 is getting a really solid strawweight contest added to it’s card. According to multiple reports, Angela Hill (12-9) is going to be taking on Tecia Torres (11-5) in a rematch. The two strawweights first fought back at UFC 188.

2020 was shaping up to be a big time year for Angela Hill, however, it’s taken a turn. After defeating Ariane Carnelossi back in September of 2019, Hill opened 2020 with back-to-back UFC wins in the first two months of the year. She rode that momentum into a shot at former title challenger Claudia Gadelha.

It was a very close fight that many believed Hill should have won. However, two of the three judges gave the fight to Gadelha at UFC on ESPN 8. Hill then turned around and got a last minute main event slot against the Karate Hottie, Michelle Waterson.

In a fight that would turn out to be a classic, Hill was once again defeated by split decision. I had the fight scored for Waterson, but many believed that Hill should have won. Had Hill been given those two decisions, she could have been in UFC title contention.

Tecia Torres was able to snap her four fight losing streak back in June. Torres took on and defeated Brianna Van Buren by unanimous decision. A fifth straight loss could have spelled the end of Torres’ current run in the UFC.

UFC Redemption

These two ladies rank 11th and 12th in the UFC‘s strawweight rankings. A loss for either would really hurt their chances moving forward while a victory would get them moving back in the right direction. A lot is on the line at UFC 256.

For Angela Hill, this is a golden opportunity to kill two birds with one stone. She can right the wrong of the last couple of decisions, and she can get back her first loss to Torres. Torres won their first fight by unanimous decision.

This is a very solid strawweight contest that has been added to a very good card at UFC 256. The card is being headlined by the greatest female fighter of all time in Amanda Nunes, however, these two ladies should put on a show in their fight.

Brian Ortega’s transformation has led him to a UFC title shot

Brian Ortega, UFC

This past Saturday at UFC Fight Island 6, we saw a new and improved Brian Ortega (15-1, 1 NC). Ortega hadn’t fought in nearly two years, and I figured he might be a little rusty. His opponent Chan Sung Jung (16-6) appeared to be the favorite entering Saturday.

Ortega has always been known for his slick skills on the ground. His guillotine chokes are legendary. However, his striking always seemed to be lacking behind. He showed promise in that area especially when he knocked out former UFC champion, Frankie Edgar.

However, most believed that a standup fight would favor the Korean Zombie on Saturday. What we saw at UFC Fight Island 6 was the complete transformation and evolution of T-City. Brian Ortega looked like a world beater on Saturday night.

From the opening bell, Ortega controlled the striking. With leg kicks from the outside and crisp shots down the middle, Ortega never allowed TKZ to get comfortable. When the Zombie charged forward in round two, he was met with a spinning elbow that floored him.

Ortega completely dominated the fight from the opening bell to the closing bell. I figured if the fight remained standing, the Zombie would have a big advantage. However, Ortega proved me and all of his doubters wrong on his way to securing a UFC title shot.

Clarity in the UFC’s featherweight division

The UFC‘s featherweight division has been in a little bit of a limbo state over the last few months. The champion, Alexander Volkanovski, just defeated Max Holloway for the second time back at UFC 251. Holloway had earned an immediate rematch after losing the title in December.

The fight was razor close, however, the judges gave the nod to the current UFC champion. With those two having fought back-to-back, there needed to be a new top contender. The UFC booked two fights that could produce a number one contender.

Due to injuries, the only fight that came to fruition occurred at UFC Fight Island 6. Brian Ortega is the new number one contender in the featherweight division, and he’s going to pose some problems for Alexander Volkanovski with the way he looks now.

Did Jessica Andrade earn a title shot at UFC Fight Island 6?

This past weekend at UFC Fight Island 6, former strawweight champion, Jessica Andrade (21-8), moved up to flyweight for the first time. Andrade had competed at bantamweight and became the champion at strawweight during her UFC career.

Despite the success at strawweight, many people believed that flyweight was the best natural weight class for the former champion. She jumped right into the deep end of the pool taking on top ranked contender, Katlyn Chookagian (14-4).

Chookagian was coming off a dominant win and was just one fight removed from a UFC title shot. Many believed that the winner could be in good position to cash in on a UFC title shot. Well, Andrade made a massive statement on Saturday.

Andrade showed off her superior strength despite being the much smaller fighter. She threw Chookagian to the ground twice. Andrade then landed some vicious hooks to the body that crumbled Chookagian giving Andrade the first round TKO victory.

UFC title shot next?

Andrade was the second UFC strawweight to move up this year to take on the top contender at flyweight. Cynthia Calvillo did the same thing against Jessica Eye. That night, Calvillo also defeated the previously top ranked contender.

However, that fight was a grinding decision with a lot of wrestling. Andrade made a massive statement with the way that she was able to win on Saturday night. She completed dominated and finished the former title challenger.

Given the way that she won and her status as a former UFC champion, I think Andrade is definitely next in line to face the winner of the UFC 255 title match. In the most likely scenario that Valentina Shevchenko retains her title, I would be very excited to see the matchup between Shevchenko and Andrade.

Shevchenko would still be a sizable favorite in that potential UFC matchup. Many people believe that she might be the best female fighter in the world. I personally thought she beat Amanda Nunes the last time they fought. A Shevchenko – Andrade title fight would be very exciting for the division.

What’s next for Katlyn Chookagian after UFC Fight Island 6?

This past Saturday at UFC Fight Island 6, the co-main event of the evening featured a fight between two top flyweight contenders. Former title challenger, Katlyn Chookagian (14-4), was welcoming the former UFC strawweight champion, Jessica Andrade (21-8) to flyweight.

Despite having fought at bantamweight during her UFC career, Andrade was at a big size disadvantage. However, Chookagian wasn’t able to really use that size advantage to her advantage in this fight.

Andrade was able to take Chookagian down a couple of times including one big slam during the first round. In addition to the takedowns, Andrade was able to land some big leg kicks that buckled the former title challenger. Andrade looked great in the first round.

Chookagian was caught with a massive hook to the body that sent her spinning to the other side of the cage. Andrade followed up with more vicious hooks to the body that finished the fight. A crushing defeat for Chookagian at UFC Fight Island 6.

What’s next after UFC Fight Island 6?

For Chookagian, it will be back to the UFC drawing board. She was coming off of a dominant victory over Antonina Shevchenko in her last fight, and a victory over the former UFC strawweight champion would’ve given her a good case for a rematch with Valentina Shevchenko.

However, Chookagian was dominated by Andrade. Chookagian has been flirting with retirement due to her desire to start a family. However, she said that she still has a goal and dream to become a UFC champion.

Chookagian has stated that once she leaves the sport to start a family, she will not be coming back. That said, Chookagian is going to need a big win in her next fight to try to get back into UFC title contention.

Perhaps a fight with Cynthia Calvillo or a fight with Lauren Murphy could be next for Chookagian. Those two were supposed to fight at UFC 254, however, Calvillo fell out of the fight. If Murphy wins, perhaps the UFC looks to book her against Chookagian or they book Calvillo with Chookagian.

What’s next for Chan Sung Jung after UFC Fight Island 6?

The Korean Zombie is one of the more popular fighters in the UFC‘s featherweight division. His dynamic striking and power along with his incredible heart make him a fan favorite. However, he didn’t show off what makes him special this past Saturday.

At UFC Fight Island 6, Chan Sung Jung (16-6) really struggled in his fight against Brian Ortega (15-1, 1 NC). Ortega had been out of the cage for nearly two years while the Zombie had been relatively active last fighting in December.

However, it looked like Jung was the fighter who had been inactive. All night long, Jung stayed on the outside and didn’t appear aggressive. Ortega used his improved striking to just pick apart Chan Sung Jung from the outside. Jung was even dropped twice.

In the end, the judges gave the shutout victory to Ortega at UFC Fight Island 6. A fight that was billed to be a war ended up being a largely one-sided affair. It was a big disappointment for the Korean Zombie. So what’s next for Chan Sung Jung inside the octagon.

What does the UFC do with TKZ?

Losing to the top contender in the division doesn’t set Jung back to far. However, it is disappointing as Jung was hoping to secure a UFC title shot with his victory. The one-sided nature of the loss will cause him to have to put together a string of wins to get back into the title picture.

In looking at the UFC‘s featherweight division, I think a decent next option could be a matchup with Josh Emmett (16-2). Emmett has won three straight and five out of his last six to get to the seventh ranking in the division.

Emmett is coming off of a bad knee injury, but he recently started resuming training. Jung didn’t appear to have any serious injuries, but it will take him a bit to recover from the loss. I think pairing these two could be a very good option for the UFC.

James Krause calls out Joaquin Buckley after UFC Fight Island 6

One of the fighters on the main card of last Saturday’s UFC Fight Island 6 card that picked up a win was James Krause (28-8). Krause picked up his seventh victory in his last eight fights with the only fight he’s lost being a fight he took on one days notice.

Quietly, Krause has turned himself into one of the more solid fighters in the UFC. Krause has also developed into quite the coach and he’s developed a solid stable of fighters. Being a coach seems to be his main focus at the moment, but he’s always down to fight.

Last Saturday he took on Claudio Silva. Silva was pressing forward the entire time, however, Krause was able to use slick movement and counters all night. In the end, it was a shutout victory for Krause who had some strong words for another UFC fighter in the post-fight press conference.

Krause was asked on if there was an issue between himself and Joaquin Buckley. Buckley has gone viral over the past couple of weeks due to his highlight reel knockout at UFC Fight Island 5. Buckley already has his next fight booked, but it didn’t stop Krause from talking about him.

“The dude’s a clown, man. People just know him from his viral video, for his viral knockout. It was a beautiful knockout. I’m not going to rag on that. The dude’s a s–t box. He’s from my neck of the woods and all he does is sit on social media and talk s–t all day. He called me to come train and I told him to get f–ked,” Krause told reporters

UFC Midwest Rivalry?

Krause went on to talk about the fact that he would love to face Buckley in the UFC. “I’ll go back up to middleweight and whoop his ass. He can get it. I know he’s got a fight set, but I’ll go back up middleweight for that. No problem. Easy work, Krause told reporters.

Buckley is set to take on Jordan Wright at UFC 255 in November. If Buckley gets through that fight with a victory, it might make sense for the UFC to book these two against each other. There is personal beef which always leads to a great build up.

Krause is a veteran in all aspects and it’s clear that Buckley has rubbed him the wrong way. A fight between the two just makes total sense, and Krause would take that fight on a moments notice given his history.

UFC books JoJo Calderwood – Jessica Eye

The UFC is planning on a big time women’s flyweight fight on their January 23rd fight night card. First reported by MMA DNA, JoJo Calderwood (14-5) will take on Jessica Eye (15-8, 1 NC) in a battle of two top six UFC flyweights.

For Calderwood, the fight against Eye is going to be a big chance for her to bounce back. Calderwood was originally supposed to get a UFC title shot back in June. However, due to an injury to the champion, the fight was called off.

Calderwood wanted to stay active so she took a short notice fight against Jennifer Maia. This proved to be a big mistake as Maia submitted her in the first round. Maia was awarded Calderwood’s UFC title shot for her submission victory.

This fight is also a big chance for Jessica Eye to bounce back. Eye is just a couple of fights removed from her shot at Valentina Shevchenko. Eye won against Viviane Araujo, however, she was not successful in her last outing.

She welcomed Cynthia Calvillo to the UFC‘s flyweight division back in June. Calvillo used a steady wrestling attack to stifle and defeat Eye by decision. It was a bad loss for the former top contender who also failed to make weight for the fight.

Sizing up this UFC matchup

This has all the makings for a really fun contest in the UFC‘s flyweight division. Calderwood has really good standup and she uses a variety of kicks and spinning techniques. Her style is pretty entertaining to watch when fights are standing.

Eye has very solid boxing of her own. Whenever she feels comfortable and in range, she’s a very tough opponent for anyone in the UFC‘s flyweight division. She’s going to have to be very active with her hands in this contest.

Whoever wins this fight could be right back in title contention. However, the loser of this contest is going to be looking at a steep climb to get back to the top. This should be a fantastic matchup with a lot on the line for both contenders.

Brian Ortega dominates TKZ at UFC Fight Island 6

Brian Ortega, UFC

The UFC hosted their sixth fight night from Fight Island tonight. The night was filled with incredible fights, but everyone was interested in the main event of the evening. Brian Ortega (15-1, 1 NC) was finally set to take on The Korean Zombie, Chan Sung Jung (16-6).

There was some bad blood leading up to their contest at UFC Fight Island 6. Dana White also said earlier this week that the winner of this contest would be the number one contender. The UFC‘s featherweight champion and the world had their eyes on this one.

Both men were very measured as the action got underway. Ortega started the striking off with a few powerful leg kicks. Jung wasn’t able to get in range early on in the UFC Fight Island 6 main event. Ortega looked sensational in the striking with straight shots and leg kicks.

Just before the first round ended, Ortega dropped Jung with a big left hook. A big first round for Brian Ortega. The second round started very similarly to the first. However, Jung really pressed forward and landed some good shots to get the action started in the second.

Ortega tried for a takedown in the first couple of minutes, but Jung defended nicely. Jung looked much more comfortable and confident in the second round. His pressure wasn’t letting Ortega get his striking off. Jung landed a very nice uppercut which got Ortega’s attention late in the second.

With about a minute left in the round, Ortega dropped Jung with a massive spinning elbow. Jung got back up and the two men traded massive shots. Ortega landed a takedown which sealed the second round for Brian Ortega.

All Brian Ortega

As the third round got underway in the UFC Fight Island 6 main event, both men seemed a little tentative. After that spinning elbow in round two, both men took some massive shots. Ortega went back to work with leg kicks and jabs.

The Korean Zombie looked really tentative after he got hurt. Ortega really controlled the third round with solid shots. There was limited action in the third, however, Ortega was able to bank his third round by pulling away on strikes.

In the fourth round, Jung really attempted to turn up the pressure, however, Ortega was still controlling the striking. Ortega shot in for a takedown and in the process he landed a massive right that cut Jung. He followed that up with a massive elbow that staggered Jung.

Ortega was looking ready for another UFC title shot in this one entering the fifth round. Jung started the fifth with pressure sensing that he was done 4-0. However, Ortega’s ability to mix things up really kept throwing the Korean Zombie off.

Ortega continued to snap Jung’s head back with straight left hands. Jung tried to close the distance, but Ortega was just touching him up. Ortega’s jabs, kicks, and straight lefts flustered Jung throughout the fifth. I had it 5-0 for Ortega and the judges gave him the fight (50-45, 50-45, 50-45)

UFC Fight Island 6 Fallout

UFC Fight Island 6 was a massive statement for Brian Ortega. In his first fight in almost two years, Ortega looked absolutely sensational. He didn’t even look like the same fighter that lost in his UFC title shot against Max Holloway.

His striking was crisp and his defense looked great. This version of Brian Ortega is going to be a massive problem for anyone in the UFC‘s featherweight division. That includes the current champion, Alexander Volkanovski. Ortega’s next fight is going to come against Volkanovski.

For the Korean Zombie, this was a crushing defeat. Many people, including myself, thought Jung was going to have the striking to carry him to a decision. However, that just wasn’t the case. Jung is still a top contender, but he was just outclassed tonight.

Jessica Andrade stops Chookagian at UFC Fight Island 6

Tonight, the UFC Fight Island 6 has delivered some solid action. The co-main event of the evening featured a big time contest in the flyweight division. Former UFC strawweight champion Jessica Andrade (21-8) was making her flyweight debut.

She was doing that against the number one ranked contender in the division, Katlyn Chookagian (14-4). Chookagian was coming off of a dominant victory in her last fight against Antonina Shevchenko. While retirement rumors have been swirling, Chookagian was focused on tonight.

As the fight started, the former UFC champion really looked to close the distance. However, Chookagian did well in the opening seconds landing a few shots. Andrade was able to push Chookagian to the fence and land a takedown early.

Chookagian was able to get back to her feet in the first. However, Andrade’s constant clinch work was solid and she landed another takedown late. Again, Chookagian got back up to her feet. However, Andrade hurt Chookagian bad to the body with a massive hook.

Andrade followed up with additional shots. Another giant body shot floored Chookagian for the final time and the ref called it. Incredible flyweight debut for the former UFC strawweight champion.

UFC Fight Island 6 Fallout

UFC Fight Island 6 was a massive statement for the former strawweight champion, Jessica Andrade. Andrade was finally fighting in her natural weight class. In her divisional debut, she stopped the top ranked contender.

It is not crazy to think that Andrade could be next in line to face the winner of the Valentina Shevchenko – Jennifer Maia fight. The loss was a crushing defeat for Katlyn Chookagian who was trying to get back to a title shot with a victory tonight.

While there have been retirement talks, I wouldn’t say that Chookagian is done after this fight. I just think that she ran into a buzzsaw in Jessica Andrade. Andrade is going to be a handful for a lot of contenders in the UFC‘s flyweight division.