Mixed martial arts enthusiasts should stay glued to their couches next weekend with two consecutive nights of big names clashing in the octagon.
On Friday, June 22, UFC on FX returns with an impressive non-title fight between lightweights, Gray Maynard and Clay Guida, at Revel Ovation Hall in Atlantic City.
Maynard (11-1) last fought in UFC 136's lightweight title fight against Frankie Edgar, resulting in a loss. Maynard was knocked out in the third round by Edgar.
Coming off of a loss to Benson Henderson, Guida (29-12) looks to reestablish himself as a perennial middleweight contender by getting a win against Maynard.
Both fighters are known for their wrestling skills, take-downs, and peak physical conditioning. Their similar fighting styles are framing UFC on FX 4 as an even matched and highly competitive fight. The fight will likely go the entire five rounds due to the secondary striking skills of the two fighters.
The following night on Saturday, June 23, UFC 147, a pay-per-view event, takes place in Belo Horizonte, Brazil. The main event is a catch weight rematch between Wanderlei Silva and Rich Franklin.
Originally, the main event for UFC 147 was scheduled to be a title fight between middleweight title holder Anderson Silva and Chael Sonnen in Rio de Janeiro. Many expected this to be the most competitive MMA fight of the year, but it was unfortunately cancelled due to a conflicting United Nations meeting in Rio. It has been rescheduled to premiere at UFC 148.
UFC 147 should still prove to be a great fight. Silva and Franklin are both predominately strikers, which means the match will most likely end by way of knockout.
The fighters have not faced each other since UFC 99 in 2009. Franklin defeated Silva through a unanimous decision.
Franklin, at 6-foot-1 has a two-inch height advantage over the shorter 5-foot-11 Silva. Silva also has a disadvantage with his 74-inch reach matching up to Franklin's 76 inches.
It is guaranteed that Silva, of Brazilian descent, will be favored by the fans in Belo Horizonte. Franklin on the other hand, is expected to get booed, despite being an overall UFC fan favorite.
I'm excited to fight in Brazil, and I'm actually interested to see if I do get booed for this fight, said Franklin. It would be the first time in a while.