5 Reasons to Watch UFC 177

Riley Kontek@@BigRIlesMMAFeatured ColumnistAugust 26, 2014

5 Reasons to Watch UFC 177

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    USA TODAY Sports

    I get it. UFC 177 on Saturday isn't the best pay-per-view the UFC has ever presented. I think that's obvious.

    Injuries have ravished the 177th-numbered show from the prelims to the main events. It has seemingly taken the wind out of the sails of a once-promising event, as we now scrounge the bottom of the barrel for entertainment.

    I am here to tell you that UFC 177 is still watchable. That's right, I said it. UFC 177 is a show you can still watch. You may just have to go to the bar to watch it if you don't want to spend more than $50.

    You may be pessimistic, but I am a half-glass-full guy. So, you want some reasons to watch UFC 177?

    It's not going to be easy, but I give you those reasons right now.

The Evolution of T.J. Dillashaw

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    USA TODAY Sports

    T.J. Dillashaw's first encounter with Renan Barao was a blow off. We all knew Barao was going to handle him easily, and we'd move on with life.

    Oh wait, that didn't happen. Dillashaw destroyed the now-former champion.

    Dillashaw was a prospect on the 14th season of The Ultimate Fighter and looked like a guy who could be a nice commodity for the UFC to have. How far he'd go, though, was something we didn't know.

    Well, now we do know. His vast improvements following the reality show have been amazing. He has turned into a complete fighter, rather than a wrestler.

    His continued evolution is intriguing. If this guy keeps getting better, it's going to be interesting to see where he ranks among the greats.

Bethe Looking for Second Scalp

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    USA TODAY Sports

    The minute Bethe Correia held up four fingers and slowly rescinded one, it was on. Her win over "Four Horsewoman" Jessamyn Duke signaled she was here and ready to pick them off one by one.

    Now she's on a mission for the title, but she's happy to take out Ronda Rousey's buddies on the way. With Duke down and Marina Shafir not in the UFC, it's natural that her next opponent is Shayna Baszler.

    Baszler has been around the block a few times and is one of the true female veterans of the sport. She has the tools and skill set that will make Correia really work for a win here.

    If the Brazilian is successful, she would have her second scalp from the famed group. It would be the type of storyline that could garner interest should she fight Rousey down the road.

Olympian Begins Quest for Gold...Again

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    Charlie Neibergall/Associated Press

    There are plenty of newcomers coming to the UFC these days. Some guys are destined for short stays, while others are stars of tomorrow.

    Henry Cejudo is particularly special. A former Olympic gold medalist in wrestling, he is like what Kurt Angle would be in a lighter weight class, had Angle chose MMA over professional wrestling.

    He has all the tools to become a star in the sport. He has the wrestling credentials, the fighting ability, the back story and the prestige. All of that is what builds draws.

    Cejudo begins his quest for UFC gold Saturday night. It won't be the first time he has been in the pursuit of a golden prize.

Prospects Galore

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    USA TODAY Sports

    You may not notice it as much on the main card, but a ton of newcomers and bright prospects will be competing at UFC 177.

    Some of the names you should keep an eye on are Henry Cejudo, Damon Jackson, Joe Soto and Anthony Birchak. All of these fighters are among the best prospects in their respective weight classes and will likely inhabit the UFC for time to come.

    UFC 177 may lack the star power, but it makes up for it with a glimpse into the future.

What Else You Gonna Do This Saturday!?

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    USA TODAY Sports

    Guys, I know UFC 177 doesn't look that appealing. I've mentioned this. But, I'm having a hard time convincing you, and realistically, what are you really going to be doing this weekend?

    Saturday nights are usually reserved for parties, staying out late and forgetting about the work week. Well, that's at least how it goes for me.

    There is still time for the UFC, though. And, any fights are better than no fights, right?

    So, before you go out and do your thing, relax for a bit, crack a beverage and tune in to UFC 177. It could be a fun little pregame to your night.