UFC 271 weekend has arrived, and the card is quite an exciting one! All eyes are on the second installment of Israel Adesanya vs. Robert Whittaker, which could potentially change the middleweight division’s landscape. That fight, however, won’t be the only one to have that effect on the 185lb division.
Jared Cannonier (14-5-0) and Derek Brunson (23-7-0) are both fighters that are well-known to fight fans all around the world. With Cannonier being ranked 3rd and Brunson being 4th in the division, it’s very possible that the winner of this bout could go on to challenge for that middleweight gold next.
Cannonier has had notable wins over Anderson Silva, Jack Hermansson, as well as Kelvin Gastelum in his most recent bout. Prior to that Gastelum fight, Cannonier went up against former middleweight champion Robert Whittaker, and he ultimately lost that fight via unanimous decision. Cannonier’s move from the light heavyweight division down to middleweight has been well received and has provided entertaining fights.
Brunson has come out the victor in bouts against Uriah Hall, Kevin Holland, and Darren Till. Brunson has actually faced both main eventers having faced Robert Whittaker at UFC Fight Night 101, and later faced the current champion Israel Adesanya at UFC 230 as the main card opener. He lost both fights in the first round but it certainly helped elevate him and, with all his other fight experience, that has served to make him a better fighter all-round.
Both Cannonier and Brunson have pro careers that span well over a decade and, as such, fans will be treated to a match packed with high fight IQ from years of experience. This fight will be a clash between Cannonier’s striking skills up against Brunson’s wrestling and both fighters will certainly be looking to make a bold statement en route of their championship gold quest. Cannonier and Brunson are both yet to experience championship status, and that alone will serve as massive motivation. This fight will certainly be up for performance bonuses.
Regardless of who wins the fight between Cannonier and Brunson, it is clear that whoever walks out of UFC 271 as the middleweight champion will immediately have a target on their back.
Embed from Getty Images