A heavyweight title fight headlines UFC 198, as champion Fabricio Werdum, a native of Porto Alegre, Brazil, defends his belt on Saturday. After suffering a back injury that prevented him from defending his title, Werdum returns to action after roughly 11 months to face second-ranked Stipe Miocic in the main event in Curitiba, Brazil, with 45,000 expected in attendance.
Werdum won the interim title by defeating Mark Hunt at UFC 180, and unified the championship with a victory over Cain Velasquez at UFC 188 in June. The 38-year-old was expected to have a rematch against Velasquez earlier this year, but Miocic, a Cleveland native, stepped in after Velasquez suffered a back injury.
The main event might be the most difficult fight on the pay-per-view to predict, and the champ only has -165 betting odds to retain, via Bovada.lv. One fighter on the main card, however, is far and away the biggest favorite.
Cris “Cyborg” Justino, once thought to be the biggest threat to Ronda Rousey’s perfect record, will make her UFC debut. Fighting at a catchweight of 140 pounds, she’ll take on heavy underdog Leslie Smith. Justino was reportedly having trouble making weight, but she came in at 139 pounds at Friday’s weigh-in.
Anderson Silva was supposed to be on the card, but his fight against Uriah Hail was canceled. Silva needed surgery this week because of inflammation in his gallbladder, and has an estimated recovery time of four to six weeks.
UFC 198 costs $59.99 in standard definition on PPV and $69.99 in HD. Fans can order the fight online with UFC.TV for $59.99. The PPV begins at 10 p.m. ET, but the main event likely won’t begin until after midnight, and possibly not until around 12:30 a.m. ET.
PPV Main Card (10 p.m. ET)
Fabricio Werdum (-165) vs. Stipe Miocic (+135)
Ronaldo Souza (-325) vs. Vitor Belfort (+250)
Cris Justino (-1200) vs. Leslie Smith (+700)
Corey Anderson (-160) vs. Mauricio Rua (+130)
Warlley Alves (-500) vs. Bryan Barberena (+350)
FSI Preliminary Card (8 p.m. ET )
Demian Maia (-350) vs. Matt Brown (+265)
Thiago Santos (-360) vs. Nate Marquardt (+270)
Francisco Trinaldo (-230) vs. Yancy Medeiros (+180)
John Lineker (-160) vs. Rob Font (+130)
Fight Pass Preliminary Card (6:30 p.m. ET )
Patrick Cummins (-250) vs. Antonio Rogerio Nogueira (+195)
Sergio Moraes (-450) vs. Luan Chagas (+325)
Zubaira Tukhugov (-175) vs. Renato Moicano (+145)