Anderson vs. Blachowicz 2.0
Corey “Overtime” Anderson and Jan Blachowicz have history. The two athletes last faced each other in 2015 where Anderson got the win over Blachowicz through judges’ decision. The pair face each other in a rematch on Saturday 15thFebruary to decide who might be in line to be the next contender for Jon Jones’ light heavyweight belt. “Overtime” Anderson is on a four-fight win streak, with a TKO win over Johnny Walker being the showpiece of his recent run. Arguably, Anderson is the more industrious fighter with his superior striking and grappling ability – no doubt the American will be utilising this and taking the fight to Blachowicz in the early rounds.
With the stakes now much higher, both contenders have significantly improved since their last meeting. Blachowicz boasts two wins in his last two fights coming from a TKO and split decision, respectively. Born and raised in Cieszyn, Poland, Blachowicz will be going into the fight as the underdog and will be keen to prove the doubters otherwise. Anderson will be wary not to rush his striking offence against the experienced Blachowicz, who won’t need a second invitation to take advantage with his renown ability to counter-strike and shock his opponent. Blachowicz remained active in the Octagon in 2019, which shows his ready and keen to get straight back in to take on Anderson after only a couple of months since he last had the hand raise.
This weekend will undoubtedly give us further insight into the future of the UFC Light heavyweight division, but will Polish power prevail on the night, or will Anderson make it 2 wins against Blachowicz?
Also on the main card, we have a women’s showdown between flyweights Montana De La Rosa and Mara “Maravilha” Romero Borella. Fighting out of Fort Worth, Texas, De La Rosa comes off the back of a unanimous decision defeat against Andrea Lee and will want to bounce back to winning ways, adding to her already impressive record of 3-1 in the UFC. Standing at 5’7” with a reach of 68”, the 24-year-old American will be using her grappling and wrestling prowess to get Borella on to the canvas, working towards her fine-tuned submission skills with 2.3 submission attempts every 3 rounds in her UFC career so far.
Italian-born Mara “Maravilha” Romero Borella will prove to be a worthy opponent for De La Rosa as the 33-year-old is also an expert on the Octagon® canvas. Before MMA, Borella worked as a personal trainer and taught children the art of Judo before transitioning into the sport. Now, she boasts a proven submission talent, alongside a hugely effective ground & pound game, as she introduced herself into the UFC with a dominating victory over Kalindra Faria in 2017. Borella currently holds a record of 4 fights, 2 wins and 2 losses as she chases her third UFC career win. This fierce bout will be sure to spark fireworks, but will it be the youth and exuberance of De La Rosa that comes out on top, or the experience and skill of Borella?
The Prospect conjuring his magic
In the prelims, we see Britains“The Prospect” Wood take on John “The Magician” Dodson from the United States. With a 3-0 record in the UFC already (with all 3 victories coming via submissions), the 26-year-old Brit is one of the UFC’s up-and-coming talent who has slid under the radar of many. Aptly name “The Prospect”, this weekend will be a chance for those who haven’t seen Wood do his thing yet to start tracking the rising star, and a chance for the London-born fighter to show what he is capable of doing in a Top 15 match-up.
However, John “The Magician” Dodson, in front of a home crowd in New Mexico, will be no easy feat for Wood. As the former two-time UFC Flyweight title challenger, Dodson posseses all the speed and power to overcome The Prospect’s submission skills, adding another win The Magician’s current record of 3-4. Standing at 5’3” with a 66” reach, Dodson will need to make sure he moves well against Wood, who has a 3” advantage in both areas.
Corey “Overtime” Anderson vs. Jan Blachowicz
Diego “Nightmare” Sanchez vs. Michel “Demolidor” Pereira
Montana De La Rosa vs. Mara “Maravilha” Romero Borella
Brok “Chata Tuska” Weaver vs. Kazula Vargas
Rogerio Bontorin vs. Ray “The Tazmexican Devil” Borg
Lando “Groovy” Vannata vs. Yancy Medeiros
Tim “The Dirty Bird” Means vs. Daniel “D-Rod” Rodriguez
John “The Magician” Dodson vs. Nathaniel “The Prospect” Wood
Jim “A-10” Miller vs. Scott “Hot Sauce” Holtzman
Devin “Brown Bear” Clark vs. Dequan “The Tarantula” Townsend
Casey Kenney vs. Merab “The Machine” Dvalishvili
Macy Chiasson vs. Nicco Montano
Mark “Bumblebee” De La Rosa vs. Raulian Paiva