UFC 161 comes from Manitoba, Canada this Saturday, eh?
The card is interesting. Intriguing maybe. Just not really exciting.
The Main Event is Rashard Evans taking on Dan Henderson. Both fighters had their last match in February. Rashard lost to a Nog (I think it was the Big), while Henderson lost a split decision to Lyoto Machida. Now, the two battle to see who still matters in the light heavyweight division.
Hendo has been around forever. Back in 1997, he made his UFC debut at UFC 17. Since then, he has fought for Pride and Strikeforce. It seems weird to see him back in the Octagon. He went to Strikeforce after he couldn’t get the money he wanted from the UFC. But, mergers do strange things and Hendo steps back in the Octagon once again.
Evans is a UFC veteran whose career started on the Ultimate Fighter. This will be his 15th fight in the UFC. He has beaten some of the best to enter the cage with victories over Tito Ortiz, Chuck Liddell, and Rampage Jackson.
Can Evans be a giant killer again and add Henderson to this list of the great fighters he defeated?
Also on the main card is Roy Nelson taking on Stipe Miocic. Nelson is UFC President Dana White’s whipping boy. Every time Nelson wins, it seems to piss off White. Nelson is not your prototypical fighter.
Look at that doughboy.
He tends to land heavy shots and then lay on you when you are on the mat. Most fighters can’t get from underneath him when it happens, so it can be a long boring fight unless Nelson is able to pound them out.
His opponent Miocic looks like another fighter from Russia. Though he idolizes Mirco Cro Cop, he is actually from Ohio. Coming off a loss to Stefan Struve, he needs a win to keep his UFC career alive. Lose and he’ll likely be relegated to Facebook or Fuel TV fights until his contract runs out. Win and who knows? Dana may be so happy he’ll give him a title shot.
Another heavyweight battle has Pat Barry taking on Shawn Jordan. Barry is an emotional fighter who has dedicated his life to MMA. Jordan is a hard hitter. This is the proverbial "I’ll be surprised if this fight goes the distance" fight.
Sam Stout and Jake Shields are on the undercard. They seem to have fallen far.
Hopefully, there'll be some big surprises out of UFC 161. With a boring UFC on Fuel TV this past Saturday, they need some exciting to come out of Canada.