UFC Nashville: A Closer Look

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UFC returns to Nashville, Tennessee for the fourth time with the main event between two seemingly different class of fighters – Cub Swanson and Artem Lobov. With the card, full of under rated fighters having a penchant for bloodying the canvas, this event promises to be an entertaining one.

Cindy Dandois is making her UFC debut against the much-experienced Alexis Davis. Though Cindy generally competes at featherweight, she has decided to drop down a weight class to take on the former title challenger. Alexis comes with a strong striking game, which she hones at Combat Sports Academy. Cindy will be looking to break through this women’s division with her decent striking game and submission skills. Both the fighters will be eager to show off their skills and grab the win to move on to the higher rankings in the division.

Thales Leites has his back against the wall as he takes on smiling Sam Alvey. Thales needs this win to stay relevant in the middleweight division and with a win over Alvey could brighten his second stint in the UFC and bring back his hopes of climbing up the contender ladder. Sam Alvey is riding a four-fight win streak and has broken UFC’s record of competing the maximum number of times (6) in just a year. Alvey also has seven victories in the middleweight division since his 2014 fight against Dylan Andrews, which takes him right behind Mousasi with 8 wins. Alvey also ties the record with five stoppage wins since 2014 against the likes of Luke Rockhold and Ronaldo Souza again behind Mousasi with six wins.

The veteran Jake Ellenberger and the up & coming Mike Perry will both bring in their reckless aggression until only one of them tastes the canvas. With a freak accident and loss in his previous fight, Jake will be looking to stop the rising new comer Mike Perry who is also coming off a decision loss to Alan Jouban. Mike Perry has earned all his nine wins via KO/TKO and with a win against the juggernaut will see him grow up in the rankings. Already making waves by calling out fighters from the division, Mike will be looking to finish his opponent and call out few more names.

Winning UFC post fight bonuses and making his opponents bleed is nothing new to Joe Lauzon who now competes for the twenty fourth time in the UFC against Steven Ray. Since 2014, Joe Lauzon had a rough road in his career – for every win he tasted defeat. Steven Ray with his previous split decision win over the veteran Ross Pearson is looking to climb up by beating a well-known name in the light weight division. But beating an all-rounder like Joe is not an easy task for any 155 pounder. Steven Ray needs a solid game plan that he can stick to – whether it is standing and banging or taking the fight to the ground. Regardless where this fight heads, it can fetch Joe his sixteenth fight-night bonus.

The co-main event of the night pitches two insanely scrappy fighters – Al Iaquinta & Diego Sanchez, who don’t shy away from throwing leather all night long. Al Iquinta is a seasoned striker with solid boxing skills to his game, which can punch holes in Diego’s game plan. But his two-year layoff stint could hinder his performance and give a slight advantage to Sanchez. If the old Raging Al returns this weekend, then Sanchez will have tough time dealing with Al on the feet and the ground. For Sanchez, the last nine fights had a mixed result with most of the wins handed over to him by the judges.

Even though Artem Lobov has fought as many times Cub Swanson has, it’s his fight record that speaks for the matchup itself. With his 12 losses catching up to his 13 wins, another loss to the gritty and tough Cub Swanson would equal the fight record and potentially send him straight out of the UFC though he has managed to get some of the marketing acumen from his buddy Conor. In his last outing against Doo Ho Choi at UFC 206 Cub Swanson looked at his very best and both the fighters put on a fight of the year performance. While Lobov has a punchers chance to defeat Cub Swanson; if by luck that even happens,it will shock the entire MMA world.


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