2018 may go down as the most significant year in the history of MMA since 2005. Last year saw an unprecedented increase in the financial leverage of individual fighters. When fighters who aren’t major draws in the UFC can reportedly generate 8 figure salaries in competing organizations, it’s clear that the old rules no longer apply. This is great for fighters in the short term, but if the UFC doesn't adapt quickly, it could be bad for everyone in the long run.
15 years ago Russia was home to some of the greatest fighters in MMA. But the MMA landscape is always changing, and through the late 2000s Russian fighters virtually disappeared. The tides have again turned for Russian MMA, and it’s not impossible to imagine a scenario where Russian fighters hold 3 major UFC belts by the end of 2019.
UFC 234 takes place in Melbourne, Australia and is headlined by the middleweight championship bout between Australia’s own Robert Whittaker and the American Kelvin Gastelum. By and large, this PPV is pretty shallow card with only 5 of the 24 fighters on the card being ranked. That said, there are some interesting matchups, and often times the seemingly bad cards are the ones that end up being the most entertaining.
UFC 231 takes place on December 8th. This card features two title fights: Max Holloway vs Brian Ortega for the featherweight title, and Valentina Shevchenko vs Joanna Jedrzejczyk for the vacant women’s flyweight belt. Both of these should be exciting fights between elite fighters.
The UFC’s annual Maddison Square Gardens card will take place this Saturday, November 3rd. Due to injuries, scheduling conflicts, and some poor planning by the UFC, this isn’t the stacked card that we’ve been accustomed to at MSG. Nonetheless, there are some fun matchups