UFC Fight Night 41 landed its main event, as middleweights Gegard Mousasi and Mark Munoz will square off in a five-round headliner live in Berlin's O2 World Arena May 31.
The UFC United Kingdom Twitter account announced the fight Thursday afternoon, tweeting:
The fight marks the UFC's third venture in to Germany and its first since UFC 122 in November 2010, when Yushin Okami defeated Nate Marquardt via unanimous decision.
Before that, the UFC invaded Cologne in June 2009 with UFC 99, a card headlined by a catchweight (195-pound) bout between Rich "Ace" Franklin and Wanderlei Silva.
Mousasi vs. Munoz makes sense from a matchmaking perspective, as Munoz is ranked No. 7 in the division, while Mousasi checks in at No. 12. On top of this, each man is coming off a loss to current 185-pound title challenger Lyoto Machida.
Mousasi lost to Machida at UFC Fight Night 36 via unanimous decision, but he outstruck "The Dragon" throughout the bout.
Even though all three judges scored the fight in favor of Machida, the fight was competitive, and it showcased Mousasi's capability as a top-tier middleweight inside the UFC Octagon.
Munoz, on the other hand, did not fare well against the Karate expert Machida.
At UFC Fight Night 30, Munoz was knocked out in the first round by a ferocious head kick courtesy of The Dragon, and now he looks to rebound against a man in Mousasi who lasted a full 25 minutes against his former foe.
While Munoz enjoys a higher ranking than Mousasi at the moment, it is hard to imagine the No. 7-ranked fighter being favored leading in to this bout.
Munoz has traditionally struggled against elite competition, while Mousasi, even in defeat, looks good and elevates his stock. When Munoz loses, on the other hand, he loses badly. Three of his four career defeats have come via knockout, and all three were absolutely vicious.
|Matt Hamill||UFC 96||KO (Head Kick), Round 1|
|Yushin Okami||UFC Live 2||Split decision|
|Chris Weidman||UFC on Fuel TV 4||KO (elbow and punches), Round 2|
|Lyoto Machida||UFC Fight Night 30||KO (Head Kick), Round 1|
Sherdog Fight Finder
Still, this is MMA, and anything can happen, so Munoz may land a huge shot and shock the German crowd, or he may outwrestle Mousasi en route to a dominant unanimous decision.
Who do you think takes this fight? Is Mousasi too good for Munoz, or can Munoz showcase an improved arsenal and shock the critics?