UFC 250: Previewing Nunes-Spencer and Other Matches on the Card

Kelsey McCarsonFeatured ColumnistJune 2, 2020

UFC 250: Previewing Nunes-Spencer and Other Matches on the Card

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    Jeff Bottari/Getty Images

    Amanda Nunes is already considered by most to be the greatest female fighter in MMA history.

    Now the UFC's fourth-ever double champion is attempting to become the only one to have defended both titles as the reigning "champ champ."

    Standing in her way is Felicia "FeeNom" Spencer, a former Invicta FC champ hoping to carve out her own piece of history at Nunes' expense.

    Plus, UFC 250 is packed to the brim with returning fan favorites in high-quality and important divisional matchups that should help the UFC crown future champions someday.

    The world might be busting apart at the seams right now, but the UFC is still pumping out quality content for people out there hoping for a little break from all the turmoil.

    Here's Bleacher Report's preview for the massive UFC 250: Nunes vs Spencer pay-per-view card taking place this weekend in Las Vegas.

UFC 250: Nunes-Spencer Fight Card and Info

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    UFC 250 Fight Card Details
    UFC 250 Fight Card DetailsJeff Bottari/Getty Images

    UFC 250: Nunes vs. Spencer is scheduled to take place on Saturday at UFC APEX in Las Vegas.

    The main card ESPN+ pay-per-view is scheduled to begin at 10 p.m. ET.

    The prelims begin on ESPN at 8 p.m. ET.

    The early prelims are set for ESPN+/UFC Fight Pass at 6:15 p.m. ET.

    The card listed below is subject to change.

    UFC 250 Main Card (ESPN+ PPV)
    Amanda Nunes vs. Felicia Spencer
    Raphael Assuncao vs. Cody Garbrandt
    Aljamain Sterling vs. Cory Sandhagen
    Neil Magny vs. Anthony Rocco Martin
    Eddie Wineland vs. Sean O'Malley

    UFC 250 Prelims (ESPN)
    Alex Caceres vs. Chase Hooper
    Ian Heinisch vs. Gerald Meerschaert
    Cody Stamann vs. Brian Kelleher
    Charles Byrd vs. Maki Pitolo

    UFC 250 Early Prelims (ESPN+/UFC Fight Pass)
    Jussier Formiga vs. Alex Perez
    Alonzo Menifield vs. Devin Clark

The Main Event: Amanda Nunes vs. Felicia Spencer

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    Will Amanda Nunes defeat Felicia Spencer and make history?
    Will Amanda Nunes defeat Felicia Spencer and make history?Chris Unger/Getty Images

    Amanda Nunes is running out of opponents.

    The Brazilian, who trains at American Top Team in Coconut Creek, Florida, has already stormed through the bantamweight ranks and defeated a who's who of 135-pound stalwarts like Miesha Tate, Ronda Rousey and Holly Holm.

    Th Lioness then moved up in weight to dethrone longtime featherweight champion and women's MMA legend, Cris Cyborg, at UFC 232 in December 2018.

    That stunning first-round stoppage win, alongside two subsequent 135-pound title defenses, has positioned the 32-year-old as the most accomplished female fighter ever.

    In fact, Nunes is such a dominant champ that she's already defeated every single fighter to ever win either the UFC bantamweight or UFC featherweight crowns.

    But Spencer, 29, is a tough Canadian and former Invicta FC featherweight champion who has a unique set of skills. She's a taekwondo striker with a black belt in Brazilian jiu-jitsu who loves to take her opponents to the mat.

    She stunningly won her UFC debut against Megan Anderson via first-round submission in May 2019 to announce herself as a true competitor.

    Next, Spencer took on Cyborg in the Brazilian's first fight since losing her title to Nunes. She went toe-to-toe with the legend, who has since moved over to Bellator to win that promotion's featherweight championship.

    While Spencer lost to Cyborg via decision, she proved her mettle against the angry former champ who had to be hoping for a more dominant win in what turned out to be her last UFC appearance.

    Now, Spencer, a product of The MMA Jungle gym in Orlando, Florida, believes she has what it takes to dethrone Nunes.

The Co-Main Event: Raphael Assuncao vs. Cody Garbrandt

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    Raphael Assuncao is aiming for UFC gold.
    Raphael Assuncao is aiming for UFC gold.Gregory Payan/Associated Press/Associated Press

    Raphael Assuncao is a well-rounded contender hoping to earn his first chance at UFC gold. He's routinely battled the biggest names in the bantamweight division but hasn't yet been able to make his way to the top of the pyramid.

    In fact, the 37-year-old seemed to be on his way to doing exactly that—or at least putting himself in position to try that—after he won four straight fights before losing his last two to Marlon Moraes and Cory Sandhagen in 2019.

    But it's 2020 now, and with the UFC bantamweight title vacant after Henry Cejudo's sudden retirement at UFC 249, Assuncao is probably hoping a win over former bantamweight champ Cody Garbrandt earns him the nod.

    It's not outside the realm of possibility. While Dana White seems intent on pitting Petr Yan against Jose Aldo to fill the 135-pound title vacancy, Assuncao would at least give the UFC president and Co. something to think about if he can soundly beat Garbrandt at UFC 250.

    But that won't be easy.

    The 28-year-old Team Alpha Male prodigy dismantled Cruz to win the UFC bantamweight championship in stunning fashion at UFC 207. At his best, he's a destructive force at 135.

    Upon winning the title, the hard-hitting American seemed on a path to stardom, but his three subsequent losses to T.J. Dillashaw (twice) and Pedro Munhoz caused him to bring in a host of new helpers to support him in his quest to regain UFC gold.

    Garbrandt enlisted the support of renowned MMA coach Mark Henry and superstar jiu-jitsu expert Ricardo Almeida for this upcoming run. He has always been a fast and powerful destroyer. Now he might be more well-rounded than ever.

Fight to Keep an Eye On: Aljamain Sterling vs. Cory Sandhagen

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    These bantamweights are both looking to advance in their careers.
    These bantamweights are both looking to advance in their careers.Mel Evans/Associated Press

    Two other fighters hoping to secure a shot at the vacant UFC bantamweight title are Aljamain Sterling and Cory Sandhagen. Both men are ranked among the top-five contenders in the division, so a win for either would vault them into consideration for the gig.

    Aljamain has won four straight. The 30-year-old seems to be peaking at a good time right now, and beating Sandhagen would go a long way toward proving that point.

    But Sandhagen, 28, won't be an easy out. He's undefeated across five UFC fights and could be on his way to wearing the bantamweight crown.

    Sterling vs. Sandhagen is an even fight on paper, and it could turn out to be the best matchup of the entire night.

Best of the Rest

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    These matches are the best of the rest and have the chance to offer big action.
    These matches are the best of the rest and have the chance to offer big action.Harry How/Getty Images

    Neil Magny vs. Anthony Rocco Martin

    UFC veteran Magny looked sharp in his three-round thrashing of Jingliang Li at UFC 248 after being out of the Octagon for over 14 months. Now the 32-year-old welterweight hopes to continue that trend against Martin.

    Martin, 30, enters the bout having won five of his last six fights. The 170-pounder's lone loss was by decision to jiu-Jitsu ace Demian Maia in June 2019.

             

    Eddie Wineland vs. Sean O'Malley

    Wineland is a dangerous veteran, the kind who helps UFC executives find out superfast whether the next big thing is really something that's going to pan out. The former World Extreme Cagefighting bantamweight champ is 35 years old and still competing near the top of the sport.

    But O'Malley is a 25-year-old undefeated phenom who seems to be on his way to making some real noise in the sport. He's already a popular star among MMA fans, and his career is one to watch.

                   

    Alex Caceres vs. Chase Hooper

    Caceres is a 31-year-old veteran who has never competed for UFC gold but has made a career out of fighting on UFC undercards since 2011.

    Now he faces Hooper, the undefeated 20-year-old featherweight prospect who appears to be on his way to becoming a star after winning his way into the UFC via Dana White's Contender Series at the tender age of 18.