My wish list for the world of MMA in 2019
2018 proved to be a stellar year across the world of MMA – it was littered with some phenomenal fights card, knockouts, submissions and crucially the likes of Bellator and ONE Championship began to make some sizeable gains in competing with the UFC.
Here is a list of hopes for MMA across the next 12 months…
Tony Ferguson and Khabib Nurmagamedov finally share the Octagon
This one is a no brainer.
Tony Ferguson is the defentive No.1 contender and the rightful next opponent for Khabib Nurmagomedov. Granted, we have been here before. On four occasions in fact. Nurmagomedov is likely to face a lengthy suspension from NSAC for everything hat took place after his win at UFC 229, but make no mistake this is fight at lightweight to make.
It is arguably the most intriguing fight in MMA and I pray to the MMA Gods we finally see these two mix it up before the year is up!
DC v Bones 3 (AT HEAVYWEIGHT!!!)
When Daniel Cormier knocked out Stipe Miocic back in July, the talk of 3rd Jon Jones bout began almost immediately.
Despite both sides publicly proclaiming they don’t have no desire to make this fight happening, and given ‘DC’ timescales (he plans on ‘retiring’ in March) it is obvious that the stars will align for these two to throw down for one final time.
Jones has just been announced to fight Anthony Smith at 205 (if NASC play nice and provide him with a license) and whilst I believe the aforementioned Smith will provide Jones with one of his toughest test, I expect the lure to fight DC once more will be too great.
I highly doubt we see ‘DC’ get his wish to fight Brock Lesnar and think it more likely we see him fight the deserving Stipe Mioicic once more.
Personally, I think Miocic will give him all he can handle this time but I think ‘DC’ will prevail.
Bar Nurmagomedov vs. Mcgregor there is no bigger fight that has the ability to feel like a truly ‘big feel fight’. Throw the heavyweight strap into the mix, along with the history that has gone before and you have yourself the fight of 2019. Sign me up!!!
Please Jones… keep out of trouble!
Before any of the above can take place, Jon Jones needs not go full Jon Jones.
So please Jon, stay away from the picograms, olympic swimming pools and can you check your creatine you ingest in and out of competition.
It has been great to see you back where you belong and long may this continue. Cheers!
Bellator, ONE FC and PFL continue their impressive growth
The past few years has finally seen a change in the MMA landscape.
For years the UFC has monopolised the market and still continues to be seen as the leader in MMA without any competition. A change is happening now though, as Bellator and One in particular are now seen as viable commodities within free agency.
Eddie Alvarez, Sage Northcut and Demetrious Johnson moving to the Singapore-based promotion are great additions to their roster and it will be a very interesting time over the next 12 months.
Already this year Bellator have made UFC blink first, thus ‘postponing’ UFC 233 for January 26th. Bellator 214: Fedor vs. Bader is an excellent fight card and their exciting mix of young up and comers, along with household names is definitely the route to go down and long may it continue.
Can the high profile trades continue?!
Back in October a historic trade between ONE Championship and UFC for Ben Askren and Demetrious Johnson signalled a potential seismic shift in the landscape.
Would this be the start of promotions collabrating and trade top stars? Time will tell. Yet, surely the prospect of stars from all 3 major promotions being able to trade. A potential for some intriguing super fights could be realised in the months to come?!
Could we finally see Michael Chandler versus upper echelon of UFC’s 155lbs. If so who could be seen as a fair trade for ‘the face of Bellator’? Perhaps the Diaz brothers?
Finally the 165lb weight class is announced in the UFC
The rumour mill has continued with whispers of the 165lb division will finally come to fruition. This could herald a number of exciting bouts between a number of fighters between 155 and 170.
Top of that wish list? Khabib versus Askren, let’s see who can outwrestle who?!
Let’s hope for another fantastic year full of memorable fights, stories and the continued growth across the sport.
What’s your wish list in MMA for 2019, let us know in the comments below???