The Ultimate Fighting Championship makes its return to Chicago this Saturday. Illinois’ windy city plays host to the highly anticipated UFC 225. The event is quite possibly the deepest talent stacked card of 2018. Asserting that claim is two championship titles being put on the line.
Co-Main and Main Event
In the night’s co-main event, two fighters who contradict each other in more ways than not, face off. Rafael dos Anjos battles Colby Covington for the interim welterweight title. Covington is at the center of an overwhelming hatred directed by many in the MMA community. A justification for such intense hate regards his personal promotion. While many despise the nature and substance of his consistent comments, one can’t deny the ability Covington possess to enthrall the masses.
On the other end, Rafael dos Anjos is a quiet man unknown for boisterous proclamations. The Brazilian fighter is the UFCs former lightweight champion. He earned a shot at welterweight gold by defeating Tarec Saffiedine, Neil Magny, and Robbie Lawler, respectively.
The final fight of UFC 225 pits two international stars against each for the second time. Robert Whittaker attempts to defend his middleweight title against Yoel Romero. Romero quickly earned a second title shot by defeating former middleweight champion Luke Rockhold by TKO in the third round of UFC 221.
Other bouts featured on UFC 225 include important match-ups across weight classes. An intriguing opening match-up pits top flyweight contenders Joseph Benavidez and Sergio Pettis against each other. Also competing early on the UFC Fight Pass prelims is Rashad Evans as he takes on Anthony Smith. Both light heavyweights look to bounce back. Smith comes off his second loss with the promotion while Evans currently sits on a four-fight losing streak.
MMASucka’s Fighter of Interest, Claudia Gadelha, takes on Carla Esparza in what looks to be a top contender eliminator in the women’s strawweight division. Other intriguing fights on the card include Andrei Arlovski vs. Tai Tuivasa, Megan Anderson vs. Holly Holm, Mirsad Bektic vs. Ricardo Lamas, and Alistair Overeem vs. Curtis Blaydes.
*Yoel Romero weighed in at 186 originally. The commission has given him two hours to make championship weight before closing the scale (championship bouts require athletes to weigh-in without a 1 lb. allowance).
**Yoel Romero weighed in at 185.2 on his second attempt to make championship weight. Currently, no news regarding the fight or an updated card have been released.
UFC 225: Whittaker vs. Romero 2, Main Card (PPV, 10 pm ET)
Middleweight championship main event: Robert Whittaker (185) vs. Yoel Romero (185.2**)
Interim welterweight championship co-main event: Colby Covington (169) vs. Rafael dos Anjos (169)
Megan Anderson (146) vs. Holly Holm (146)
Andrei Arlovski (249) vs. Tai Tuivasa (261)
Phil “CM Punk” Brooks (169) vs. Mike Jackson (170.5)
Preliminary Card (FS1, 8 pm ET)
Curtis Blaydes (254) vs. Alistair Overeem (244)
Carla Esparza (116) vs. Claudia Gadelha (116)
Mirsad Bektic (146) vs. Ricardo Lamas (145)
Rashad Coulter (247) vs. Chris De La Rocha (261)
Early Preliminary Card (UFC Fight Pass, 6:15 pm ET)
Rashad Evans (205) vs. Anthony Smith (206)
Joseph Benavidez (125.5) vs. Sergio Pettis (126)
Clay Guida (154) vs. Charles Oliveira (155)
Dan Ige (146) vs. Mike Santiago (145)
*Romero has an additional 2 hours to weigh in for the second time.
** Romero weighed in at 185.2 on his second attempt.
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