UFC 166: Which Fight Will Steal the Show?
With two of the most devastating heavyweights completing their trilogy at UFC 166 on Saturday, it’s hard to look past the main event as the highlight of the show. But when you look further down the card, one other fight promises more fireworks.
In the third bout from the top, Diego Sanchez returns to lightweight for the second time this year against the man whom many consider to be the rightful 155-pound champion, Gilbert Melendez. This match has “Fight of the Night” written all over it, and not only because Sanchez has achieved that honour in five of his last eight fights.
Melendez brings a pace and ferocity to the table that none of Sanchez’s recent opponents have brought. He’s a 24-fight veteran of the sport and a former WEC and Strikeforce champion who isn’t afraid to fight in the pocket. As a result, we’re likely to see plenty of that action this weekend.
Of course, they will have their work cut out for them, especially considering the four heavyweights colliding above them on the card.
Roy Nelson and Daniel Cormier’s fight in the co-main event is full of potential, too. Nelson throws bombs, and some of Cormier’s fights, particularly in Strikeforce, were barn burners.
Who can forget how he brutally dismantled the giant Antonio Silva? Fresh off his victory against Fedor Emelianenko, Cormier TKO’ed the Brazilian inside the first round.
Or how he threw the veteran Josh Barnett around like a rag doll during Strikeforce’s Heavyweight Grand Prix final?
But then again, Cormier’s UFC debut against Frank Mir earlier in the year was a snoozefest, and there’s every chance we could be treated to more “humping” against the cage when he faces Nelson, considering "Big Country’s" punching power and his submission game.
The only other fight that could steal the show is the Cain Velasquez vs. Junior Dos Santos main event.
Both their previous encounters were thrilling affairs for different reasons. The first fight featured Dos Santos’ flash knockout of the champion, and in the second one, Velasquez mauled "Cigano" for five rounds.
The lower weight classes may provide pace and aggression, but nothing can compare to watching two behemoths clash like wild beasts.
Whether we’ll be treated to a primal encounter remains to be seen, and the chances of Sanchez claiming his sixth Fight of the Night award in the UFC against Melendez are up in the air as well. But considering the two lightweight talents going head-to-head at UFC 166, they’re the likeliest to steal the show from the heavyweights.
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