Fighter Profile: Curtis Blaydes

Photo Courtesy Of Zuffa LLC

Curtis Blaydes will make his return to the UFC Octagon on Saturday the 26th when he faces off against Chris Daukas. Blaydes will be hunting his 11th Knockout win when he steps into the Cage and faces Daukaus. Blaydes only three losses in his career are twice to Francis Ngannou and Derrick Lewis who are elite Heavyweights, he goes into next Saturday’s contest as a heavy betting favorite.

Blaydes was born in Naperville, Illinois on February 18, 1991 he grew up in Chicago and would get his start in Martial Arts when he would start Wrestling st De La Salle Institute where he was a standout winning a State title his senior year. He finished his High School career with a 95-18 record with an impressive 44-0 record his senior year. Blaydes would then get a full wrestling scholarship to Northern Illinois University. In his freshman year at NIU he compiled a 19-2 record. He’d then transfer to Harper College where he’d win the NJCAA National Championship. After he completed this feat he’d go on to leave school to  focus on MMA.

Blaydes compiled an impressive 5-0 armature record in MMA before making his professional debut against Lorenzo Hood winning by TKO (Doctor Stoppage) in May of 2014 in the XFO promotion. Blaydes would then face William Baptiste in October of 2014 in that same promotion again winning by TKO(Punches.)  Brad Faylor would be next for Blaydes again he’d win by TKO (Punches.) In his next two outings he’d face Allen Crowder and Luis Cortez winning both fights by TKO. Blaydes would then get the call to join the biggest MMA promotion in the world, the UFC.

Blaydes would make his UFC debut against Ngannou in April of 2016. Unfortunately for Blaydes he’d lose the contest by TKO marking the first loss of his career and in the promotion. He would then face Cody East in October of 2016 winning by TKO (Elbows) which earned him Performance of the Night honors. He’d then face Adam Milstead he’d win the contest but it would be overturned after Blaydes tested positive for Pot. He’d then go on another four fight win streak before losing another fight to Francis Ngannou. Blaydes would then go on another four fight run before dropping a fight to Knockout artist Derrick Lewis. In his last contest in September of 2021 he’d win against Jairzinho Rozenstruik. 

We hope Blaydes can make it two in a row when he steps into the Octagon on the 26th.

Fighter Profile: Francis Ngannou

UFC: Francis Ngannou: My dream since I was a child was to be a boxer | Marca
Francis Ngannou Courtesty of Zuffa LLC

Francis Ngannou is the baddest man on the planet right now at UFC 270 he retained the UFC Heavyweight title against a familiar foe, his former training partner Ciryl Gane. Ngannou is an amazing testament to the power of hardwork and sacrifice from being a child laborer, homeless man,  to a UFC champion. Although his contract is a constant sore spot for Ngannou, his performances prove that he is worth any penny the UFC gives him, and fans hope that the super fight between him and Jon Jones will finally happen after he gets his knee injury fixed.

Ngannou was born September 5th 1986 Batié, Cameroon. Ngannou had little to no education and at age ten he started working at a sand quarry in Batié. Ngannou’s father was a street fighter and Ngannou decided he wouldn’t follow in his dad’s footsteps as a streetfighter and would focus on Boxing to do something positive with his life to avoid gang life. Ngannou started training Boxing in Cameroon  but stopped due to illness, he’d pick it up later on and decided to train in better conditions in Paris, France.

Ngannou would go to Europe and would get as far as Spain Before getting jailed for two months for entering the country illegally. He’d eventually get freed and would end up being homeless in France where he met his eventual coach who would let Ngannou live at his gym and switched him to fighting MMA.

Ngannou made his MMA debut against Rachid Benzina he’d win by Submission (Armbar.) He’d drop his next fight to Zoumana Cisse by Unanimous Decision after. Ngannou would then fight Bilal Tahtahi winning by KO (Punch) in April of 2014 on that same night he’d also face Nicolas Specq winning by Submission (Arm-triangle choke.) In September of 2014 he’d face Luc Ngeleka winning by Submission (Guillotine choke.) Ngannou would face William Baldutti in May of 2015 winning by TKO (Punches)

Ngannou would then get the call to fight in the UFC. He’d make his UFC debut against Curtis Blaydes and would win by TKO (Doctor Stoppage.) Ngannou would then face Bojan Mihajlović and would win by TKO (Punches.) He’d then face Anthony Hamilton and would win via Submission (kimura.) His fist and last Submission victory to date in the UFC. Andrei Arlovski and Alistair Overeem would be his next two fights which he  would emerge victorious and earned him a title shot against MMA Heavyweight Goat Stipe Miocic. Ngannou would lose by Unanimous Decision he’d also lose his next fight to Derrick Lewis. He’d win his next four fights and would again get a title shot against Miocic in March of 2021 Ngannou would win the fight and become The UFC Heavyweight Champion. 

Ngannou would make his first title defense against Ciryl Gane. Ngannou would basically walk out of the fight a free man if he hadn’t defended the belt successfully, but Ngannou did win and now the UFC is going to take Ngannou to court to drain him for his career earnings if he doesn’t submit. A peculiar conundrum for the baddest man on the planet.


What’s Next For Cyril Gane?

Daily reminder that Cyril Gane will be ufc heavyweight champion : r/ufc
Gane at ceremonial weigh ins before UFC 265

Cyril Gane faced Francis Ngannou at UFC 270 last Saturday he definitely won the first two rounds but ultimately couldn’t win the title as Francis Ngannou’s wrestling truly came to the forefront, and he secured the victory. But many saw Gane as a worthy competitor to the champ, and wonder what is next for the former interim champ? Could a fight with Stipe Miocic be in the cards. Could someone like Curtis Blaydes be in order. Or could we see a rematch between Gane and Ngannou. There are some great fights to be made for the former Interim UFC champ.

One Great fight the UFC could definitely make is a fight between Gane and Mioicic. Miocic Lost his belt to Ngannou at UFC 260 in March of 2021. Miocic has sat out for the last ten months and since then has welcomed his second child, a son Mateo to the World. Miocic would be an interesting matchup for Gane, and one I think fight fans would like to see. They both have something in common both losing to Ngannou in their last fights. And you have to think Miocic is itching to get back into the cage a few more times before he retires. 

Gane vs. Blaydes could be an interesting matchup in the heavyweight division. Blaydes is coming off a win to Jairzinho Rozenstruik. Blaydes is a former Wrestler and would be an interesting matchup against Gane’s strike heavy attack. Gane has some submission skills but likes to stay standing as he is a practitioner of the art of eight limbs.I think that this would be an interesting fight and stylistically a good matchup for the pair and it makes sense with where both of them currently sit in the rankings. 

I think a rematch with Ngannou would be a great fight. Ngannou is currently in heated talks with the UFC over a possible lawsuit from the company. Ngannou is a freeagent as of the end of 2022 and it looks like he may leave the UFC. Gane has called for a rematch at some point with Ngannou and I think the fans would love to see that fight again. They were an interesting matchup, Gane definitely won two rounds on saturday night but Ngannou’s wrestling really took over and we saw why he is the baddest man on the planet.

I’m excited to see who Gane fights next because I think Gane will hold the UFC title at some point in the near future.

Will Jon Jones Fight in 2022?

Jon Jones Stripped of UFC Light Heavyweight Title - Rolling Stone
Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC/Getty

If you’re an MMA fan you may be asking yourself some questions about arguably the Greatest Mixed Martial Artist of all time, Jon Jones. These questions might include, will Jon Jones fight in 2022? Who will He face? Will he do well at Heavyweight? Jones who has not fought since February of 2020 (before the never-ending Covid-19 pandemic.) Jones has an impressive record of 24-1-1 and was the youngest UFC Champion of all time winning his first title at the astounding age of 23 in 2011 and since then every fight he’s been in has been a title fight. He is one of the promotion’s biggest stars and PPV draws and puts on electric performances inside the cage, and less than stellar performances out of the cage.

The first question is whether Jones will fight in 2022? Thinking about this objectively I would say yes. Jones hasn’t fought since February 2020 if he doesn’t fight this year then this will move Jones’s return to the UFC Octagon to 2023. Jones is only 34 and he has not fought in the Octagon since he was 32 one would think he’d want to get in there while father time is still on his time. The other thing one would have to consider is ring rust, but getting back into the Octagon sooner rather than later Jones will have less of a chance of suffering from ring rust. Jones is such a high calibre of a fighter that I think it might not affect him like when Georges St-Pierre took four years off and came back to win The Middleweight title at UFC 217 against Michael Bisping.

The second question would be who will he face in the Heavyweight division. This is a tough decision for the UFC. I think that it would be great to see him make his Heavyweight Debut in a title fight. Again like when St-Pierre came out of retirement to take on Bisping. So that would mean Jones would take on the winner of Ngannou vs Ciryl Gane which is taking place in January. I think the matchup between Ngannou who looks like a superhero against Arguably the GOAT would sell like crazy, and make the UFC oodles of money. A matchup with Gane would still sell, but I don’t think as much as a matchup with Ngannou. If it’s not a title fight I think fans would really like to see him fight Stipe Miocic, but who knows if what’s in the cards?

The final question I think people will look at is whether or not Jones will do well at Heavyweight. Let’s just look at Jones as a whole. He was the youngest UFC Champion of all time. He’s a beast in the cage. He comes from a family of athletes his Brothers Arthur and Chandler Jones both played in the NFL and have Super Bowl rings. Jones’ Wrestling background has served him very well and he’s also a Purple belt in Brazillian Jiu Jitsu so he definitely has skills to take down these bigger guys and get Submission wins. And Jones has knockout power. I think heavyweight will suit Jones very well as he’s the complete package as far as an MMA fighter goes.

If Jones stays on the straight and narrow and keeps testing negative and stays out of trouble with the law I think we will see him in the UFC Octagon on a UFC PPV sometime soon!

Fighter Profile: Ciryl Gane

Ciryl Gane not surprised he opened as betting favorite over Francis Ngannou

Ciryl Gane has had a quick rise to the top in MMA. The former Muay Thai fighter has only been fighting MMA since 2018 an amazing feat considering he is now the interim UFC Heavyweight Champion and will be fighting in a title unification bout against current Heavyweight Champion, Francis Ngannou at UFC 270 on Saturday January 22nd 2022 at the Honda Center in Anaheim, California. What Makes it more interesting is that Gane and Ngannou were training partners in France.  Add to that Gane is undefeated in all of his fights, Gane has never lost an MMA bout or a Muay Thai fight.

Gane was born on April 12, 1990 in La Roche-sur-Yon, France. Gane is of Guadeloupean descent on his father’s side. His father was an athlete who played soccer, Gane followed suit and played soccer and basketball. Eventually Gane took up Muay Thai and found that he had talent in the sport. Eventually he took a pro fight against Jérémy Jeanne for the Hurricane Fighting 3 promotion, he’d win by TKO. Gane won six more fights before transitioning to MMA in the summer of 2018. 

Gane showed amazing skill on his feet early in his MMA career, but also has submission skill that would come into play in his first fight against Bobby Sullivan who he beat by with a Front Choke, winning him the vacant TKO promotion’s Heavyweight Championship. He’d defend that title two times, the first against Adam Dyczka by TKO (punches) in September of 2018. He’d then face Roggers Souza and would again win by  TKO (punches) in the first round. Gane’s quick dominance caught the attention of the UFC.

Gane would make his UFC debut against Raphael Pessoa and would win via Submission (arm-triangle choke.) He’d then face Don’Tale Mayes and secured the win via Submission (heel hook.) Gane would then face Tanner Boser and would win via Unanimous Decision. He’d then face Junior dos Santos, and win via TKO. Jairzinho Rozenstruik and Alexander Volkov would be next for Gane and he would win both fights by Unanimous Decision. Gane would then face Derrick Lewis for the Interim Heavyweight UFC belt  Gane would win by TKO (Punches) in round three.

Gane will be fighting in a title unification bout against current Heavyweight Champion, Francis Ngannou at UFC 270 on Saturday January 22nd 2022. It’ll be interesting to see which of these training partners comes out on top.

Great Fights Coming Your Way In 2022!

What's ahead for Francis Ngannou, Israel Adesanya and every other UFC  champion
UFC heavyweight champion Francis Ngannou and UFC middleweight champ Israel Adesanya. Mike Roach/Zuffa LLC

 Gegard Mousasi vs. Austin Vanderford 

Bellator Middleweight World Champion Gegard Mousasi faces undefeated, number one  contender Austin Vanderford in the main event of Bellator Dublin on February 25th live from the 3Arena in Dublin, Ireland. Mousasi is making his second title defense of his second reign as Bellator Middleweight Champion. He’s riding a three fight win streak including victories over Lyoto Machida, Douglas Lima, and John Salter. The Middleweight champ has a lengthy fight record in the sport’s two biggest promotions. He will be facing Austin Vanderford who last fought Fabian Edwards at Bellator 259 Cyborg vs. Smith 2. Vanderford is originally from Alaska and is currently fighting out of American Top Team in Coconut Creek FL.

Islam Makhachev vs. Beneil Dariush

Islam Makhachev is hailed by some as the second coming of former Lightweight Champion Khabib Nurmagomedov. Some even say that even though Makhachev is not undefeated like his mentor Nurmagomedov, he is a better fighter. Mackachev is riding a nine fight win streak and before his loss to Adriano Martins at UFC 192 he was riding an impressive twelve fight win streak. Makhachev hopes that with a win over Beneil Dariush he will get closer to a title fight than ever before. Dariush Is also riding a win streak of his own winning his last seven fights including victories over prominent Lightweights like Tony Ferguson. Dariush is a Black Belt in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and is also a Black Belt in Muay Thai so it’ll be interesting which weapons in his arsenal he will pull out when he faces Makhachev.

Israel Adesanya vs. Robert Whittaker 2

Israel Adesanya will return to the UFC Octagon at UFC 271 to make his fourth title defense against Robert Whittaker who he won the Middleweight title against at UFC 243 in October of 2019 by KO. Adesanya has been absolutely unstoppable at Middleweight winning every contest he has ever fought at 185. His only loss in MMA came as a result of a move up to attempt to become a double champion by taking then Light Heavyweight Champion Jan Błachowicz’s title.  Robert Whittaker has been on a three fight win streak since losing his title to Adesanya including victories over Darren Till, Jared Cannonier, and Kelvin Gastelum. Before losing to Adesanya, Whittaker was on an impressive nine fight win streak including wins over Derek Brunson, Ronaldo Souza, and Yoel Romero.

Francis Ngannou vs. Ciryl Gane

UFC Heavyweight Champion Francis Ngannou will face off against Interim UFC Heavyweight Champion Ciryl Gane in January at UFC 270 in a five round championship unifying fight. Nagannou is coming off his title win at UFC 260 when he beat Heavyweight GOAT Stipe Miocic. Ngannou is on a five fight win streak and he hopes to make it six when he faces the undefeated interim champ Gane.  Gane was Ngannou’s former training partner, and whatever Ngannou’s former coach is doing  for his athletes is working incredibly well as Gane has climbed to the top of the division rather quickly with victories over Jairzinho Rozenstruik, Alexander Volkov, and Derrick Lewis with the last fight against Lewis earning him the UFC interim Heavyweight title. It’ll be interesting to see how these two do when they step into the UFC Octagon.

What’s next for Derrick ‘The Black Beast’ Lewis?

Photo Courtesy of Getty Images

Derrick “The Black Beast” Lewis broke the UFC Knockout record on Saturday night in Las Vegas when he faced former Philadelphia Police officer Chris Daukas. Lewis is a fierce opponent and we think that there are many potential options for Lewis who is ranked third in the UFC Heavyweight division. The first would be a match up with Stipe Miocic. The next fight I think people would love to see would be a matchup with Jairzinho Rozenstruik. The final matchup that I think makes sense is the Winner of Francis Ngannou vs. Cyril Gane.

Stipe Miocic has been out of action since March of 2021. The Firefighter turned Heavyweight GOAT has had a busy year welcoming the birth of his son, Mateo. Miocic and Lewis have never faced off against each other which is what makes this match up so intriguing. Lewis has the clear weight advantage, as he walks around at 290 and cuts down to the Heavyweight Limit. Stipe walks around anywhere from between 235 pounds to 242 pounds. We don’t know how much of a disadvantage Miocic faced when he walked into the cage 30 pounds lighter than Ngannou, but it probably played a part in it. This seems like it’d be a great fight that the UFC brass would love to put on. 

One clear option would be the winner of the Heavyweight title unification bout between Ngannou and Gane. I think the UFC would likely rather put on a rematch between Ngannou and Lewis before they put on a rematch between Gane and Lewis who just fought for the Interim belt at UFC 265. One variable is the fact that Ngannou is on the last fight of his UFC deal and Dana White and Ngannou have been trading verbal blows to each other via the MMA media with White going as far as to say ‘If you don’t want to be with us, no problem.’ A clear message to the undisputed Heavyweight Champion. I think the fans would love to see the rematch between Lewis and Ngannou.

A fight I’d like to see Lewis in is a fight with Rozenstruik.  Rozenstruik is currently ranked sixth in the division and this is definitely a fight that would be in Lewis’ wheelhouse of three round bouts.  Rozenstruik has a record of 12-3 and his only losses were to Curtis Blaydes, Interim Champion Gane, and current Champion Ngannou. Needless to say this would be an interesting fight with Lewis’ striking and Rozenstruik’s striking being at the forefront of the bout.

Lewis is a fan favorite and he moves the Needle like no one else in the sport. He can Knockout just about anyone, and is just an overall great personality for the sport. He also shows that redemption is possible even when you think there’s no way to turn your life around. We look forward to seeing who Lewis faces or Knocks out next.

What’s Next for Stipe Miocic?

Miocic with his Heavyweight belt. Photo Courtesy of Getty images

The UFC’s greatest Heavyweight of all time Stipe Miocic has been absent from the UFC Octagon since he lost his title to Francis Ngannou in March. Miocic has been busy with the birth of his second child, Mateo. And of course Miocic has been working his day job as a Firefighter. Miocic definitely has a full plate and was going to take the rest of the year off from fighting after his loss, but 2021 is almost over so we’re going to take a look at some great options for Miocic’s return to action in the Heavyweight division.

One of the best fights the UFC could make would be a fight against Jon Jones. Jones was in some recent legal trouble, and it should be interesting to see if Jones escapes this time scot-free. Jones who was a long time Light Heavyweight champion in the UFC has recently said he was moving up to Heavyweight and has been rumored to want a title fight his first fight in. 

It seems like the UFC doesn’t want Jones to fight for the title right away as talks for Jones to fight Ngannou have soured. It would make sense for Jones to face Miocic as Miocic could be a stepping stone towards a title fight if Jones wins, but Miocic is a tough customer and a great mixed martial artist.

One interesting option would be for Miocic to fight Ciryl Gane. Gane is about to fight Ngannou in a title unification bout in January at UFC 270. If Gane were to lose to Ngannou it’d be great to see Miocic step into the Octagon and face Gane in a non title fight although this seems unlikely. Miocic would be a tough fight for the undefeated Frenchman.

Most likely for Miocic would be a trilogy fight with Ngannou. Ngannou and Miocic first stepped into the UFC Octagon on January 20, 2018 in Boston at UFC 220. Miocic won via unanimous decision and defended his Heavyweight title. The Second time around was a tough outing the pair met in the UFC Apex and Miocic lost his title. It’d be great to see these two step into the Octagon for a third time and Miocic to win his title back. 

No matter who Miocic fights next we hope that he returns to the win column and hopefully has his title back by the end of 2022. No matter if it’s Jones, Gane, or Ngannou the UFC has some great fights that they could make in the future.





Title Unification Bout Between Heavyweight Champion Francis Ngannou and  Interim Champion Ciryl Gane Announced For UFC 270

Francis Ngannou after defeating Stipe Miocic in March of 2021 via KO (Punch)
Credit: Getty/UFC

Francis Ngannou has been waiting to defend his title, and after bickering and rumblings on Twitter about a possible fight with Jon Jones. It’s now been announced that Ngannou will be facing Interim Heavyweight Champion Ciryl Gane in a five round title unification bout at UFC 270 . The two fighters are quite familiar with each other as they use to be training partners in France 

Ngannou Is coming off his first title win against former two time UFC Heavyweight champion Stipe Miocic. Ngannou is on a five fight win streak all of which have come by knockout. Ngannou packs a powerful punch that is equivalent to being hit by a Ford Escort. Ngannou has an amazing story of perseverance and what you can achieve if you keep on trying from being a child laborer in a sand mine in his nativer Cameroon to Heavyweight Champion of the world. 

Gane is undefeated and is coming off another win against Derrick Lewis at UFC 265 in August for The UFC Interim  heavyweight title. Gane who only started his MMA career 3 years ago has a meteoric rise.

It is rumored that Israel Adesanya will also be defending his title at UFC 270. It is not known where UFC 270 will be held.    





Jon Jones flexes at a weigh in ahead of UFC 235. Photo courtesy of Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

2020 was an odd year for the UFC. It started off completely normal with cards including the promotion’s top stars. During this normal stretch we got to see Jon Jones fight at UFC 247 in February where he defeated  Dominick Reyes by unanimous decision. Then the pandemic hit, and sports as a whole shut down. We haven’t seen Jones fight since. No weird PPV’s at the UFC Apex or bouts at Fight Island in Abu Dhabi.Then there were the rumors of him bulking up to move up to the heavyweight division that were later confirmed by his instagram.  So what’s next for Jon Jones?

If you follow the MMA press core you’ll see that MMA journalists love to ask other fighters their opinion on Jon Jones. Recently Israel Adesanya responded by saying “I don’t think we’re ever going to see Jon Jones fight at heavyweight,”  he added “F*ck, he’s been saying this since 2013. You either get it done or you don’t.” Adesanya asked if he’d ever consider fighting Jones at 205 which he said he was considering at the tail end of his career if it was ever offered.

Adesanya who made the jump to Light Heavyweight in March went on to say “For me, I jumped up [a division] within three years of [being with] the company. I jumped into the division ahead of me. The guys up there respect me — even the champion up there gave me my props. So yeah, I just think it’s not something that anyone can do. And he’s getting fat for no reason now.” harsh words from the middleweight champion. But this verbal sparring just makes the question what is next for Jones even more interesting. 

Dana White has offered Jones multiple different fights including former Heavyweight champion Stipe Miocic. Jones basically told the UFC he was not interested in fighting Stipe. White says he thinks Jones will fight again in 2022. Possibly against the winner of the title unification bout between current Heavyweight Champion,  Francis Ngannou and Interim Champion,  Ciryl Gane.

White and Jones went at each other exchanging verbal barbs when Ngannou first won the UFC Heavyweight title against Stipe Miocic in March of 2021 at UFC 260 implying that Jones was scared to face Ngannou at Heavyweight.

The truth remains to be seen, but hopefully Jones fights again soon. Jones is the Babe Ruth of MMA so it’d be good to see him add more fights to his resume.  It would also be great to see him win a title at Heavyweight. You’d hate to see the greatest of all time suffer from the effects of ring rust.

Update 9/25: Jones was arrested hours after getting inducted into the UFC Hall of Fame. Jones 34, faces misdemeanor domestic battery and a felony vehicle damage charge. Jones has posted bail and will make a court appearance on October 26th.

UFC president Dana White said of the incident “It’s hard to bring this guy to Las Vegas for any reason. This city is not good for Jon Jones. And here we are again, It’s like it’s not even shocking anymore. When we bring him here, it’s almost expected. Can’t even get him into Las Vegas for less than 12 hours to induct him into the Hall of Fame. It’s a problem. This guy’s got a lot of demons, man – a lot of demons.”