UFC 211 invades Dallas this weekend and boasts an action-packed main card that promises to deliver non-stop pay-per-view action. With MMA programming accessible more than ever, a card as stacked as this one is worth paying for.
In the main event, UFC Heavyweight champion Stipe Miocic defends his belt against former champion, Junior dos Santos. Performing in one fight per quarter last year, Miocic defeated three former champions in a row, winning the coveted championship in the process.
The Cleveland native made a successful first defense of his title against Alistair Overeem last September, keeping his first round win streak alive. The fight with dos Santos is a rematch to a 2014 pairing, were Miocic lost a unanimous decision.
Since recently getting back in the win column last year, dos Santos hasn't been as active of late. A coterie of injuries and opponent cancellations have plagued a still promising career. With the Heavyweight crown exchanging hands pretty rapidly in the UFC, a win for dos Santos would be a continuation of his reputation as the baddest man on the planet, which began when he entered the high level game at UFC 90 in 2008.
In the co-main event, UFC strawweight champion Joanna Jedrzejczyk looks to continue her undefeated win streak when she faces Jessica Andrade.
A decorated Kickboxer, Jedrzejczyk comes from the hallowed American Top Team camp and has replaced Ronda Rousey as the new dominant female MMA fighter. Since knocking out Carla Esparza in the second round in 2015, her next four title defenses have yielded a knockout and three unanimous decisions. Jedrzejczyk is on track to clean out the strawweight division unless Andrade can derail the success train.
Andrade entered the UFC in 2013 with her first fight being a loss to Liz Carmouch. In that fight, she and Carmouche hold the distinction of being the first two openly gay fighters to face each other in the UFC Octagon. After a three-fight win streak followed by a string of losses, Andrade returned back to the winning column at UFC 199 finishing two of her last three opponents. Now currently on yet another three-fight win streak, most recently defeating Angela Hill in February, Andrade is looking to show that she can tussle with the current best in the division.
With new options for the women’s division and the announcement of the new flyweight division, this fight will determine whether Andrade begins reign as the new strawweight champion, or if Jedrzejczyk keeps the belt. If the latter occurs, rest assured she will try to replicate Conor McGregor’s historic two weight class champion status in the future flyweight ranks.
Following the cancellation of a main card bout between Henry Cejudo and Sergio Pettis late Wednesday afternoon, the UFC announced that the return of middleweight juggernaut David Branch against top-10 ranked middleweight Krzysztof Jotko had been moved up to the pay-per-view opener.
Branch is currently riding a five-fight win streak with his most recent win being a unanimous decision over former title challenger, Thales Leites.
Branch, a native of Brownsville, Brooklyn, is a former middleweight and light heavyweight champion for World Series of Fighting (WSOF) that recently entered free agency after the dissolution of the promotion.
While competing for WSOF, Branch won and defended both the middleweight and light heavyweight belts. He defended the middleweight belt three times, and he defended the light-heavyweight belt once. Branch’s success outside of the UFC set up his return, and this new addition to the PPV card gives him the opportunity to show his relevance in MMA to a wider audience.
Catch all the action live from the American Airlines Arena in Dallas live at 10pm EST / 7pm PST.