UFC 220: Miocic versus Ngannou Breakdown and Analysis
The UFC’s first pay-per-view event of 2018, UFC 220, is scheduled to go-down from Boston, Massachusetts on 20 January. And as one would expect from a show that’s intended to kick a new and exciting year of MMA action off, UFC 220 is stacked to the brim with remarkable match-ups, including a heavyweight title fight between champion Stipe Miocic and challenger Francis Ngannou in the main event, a light heavyweight title fight between champion Daniel Cormier and challenger Volkan Oezdemir in the co-main event slot, and much, much more.
Fans of high-level, fast-paced MMA should tune-in to this outstanding fight card.
Let’s take a look at what can be expected from UFC 220’s main and co-main events!
Co-Main Event: Daniel Cormier versus Volkan Oezdemir
Daniel Cormier is one of the greatest light heavyweight fighters of all-time. To be sure, “DC” has come up short against only one man in his professional career: Jon Jones. Specifically, Cormier lost a much-anticipated rematch with Jones in his last outing, despite having had considerable success until succumbing to strikes. Again, however, Jon Jones failed the most important test in combat sports—the post-fight drug test—and was stripped of his belt and suspended; his victory was also overturned to a “No Contest.” Cormier was reinstated as champion, and this match against Volkan Oezdemir was promptly booked.
It’d be difficult to think of a more intriguing bout than this, for both Cormier and Oezdemir; Oezdemir is a dangerously powerful striker who has finished eleven of his fifteen career wins via knockout, and who has compiled an undefeated UFC record. Furthermore, the Switzerland-native’s previous two victories, over elite competitors Misha Cirkunov and Jimi Manuwa, were each earned in the very first minute of the opening round!
Against this boxing-focused challenger, expect Cormier to, as he has so often in the past, look to impose his wrestling skills—and quickly, too. Because, while DC does have sound striking abilities of his own, Oezdemir possesses power that cannot be understated; moreover, Volkan may be susceptible to the takedown—especially when that takedown is being attempted by Cormier.
With all that said, Oezdemir is a decade younger than Cormier, has momentum on his side, and can find a home for his strikes from anywhere inside the Octagon. Under the right circumstances, fans may see a new light heavyweight champion crowned at UFC 220.
Main Event: Stipe Miocic versus Francis Ngannou
Ohio’s Stipe Miocic has quietly built-up one of the greatest heavyweight title reigns in UFC history by beating Fabricio Werdum to claim the belt, and then defending against Alistair Overeem and Junior dos Santos, winning via first-round knockout in each match. Furthermore, Miocic’s impressive striking, grappling, and clinch abilities alike have also rendered him, arguably, the most well-rounded heavyweight in UFC history.
He’ll have to put all these skills together to beat quick-rising challenger Francis Ngannou at UFC 220.
Ngannou burst onto the UFC scene in 2015, and since then he’s won all six of his bouts under the promotional banner. More impressive yet is the fact that these UFC victories have each come inside the distance, with the last four having been earned in the very first round! Ngannou proved in his latest outing—which, astonishingly, took place on 2 December 2017—that he boasted some of the most ferocious power in all of MMA when he knocked Alistair Overeem out with a brutal uppercut.
Expect Ngannou to, as he has in each of his previous bouts, attempt to find a home for his ill-intending punches as soon as the opening bell rings. Miocic will, in turn, attempt to strike from a distance and use his jab to keep the challenger at bay, much like he did against Mark Hunt. Miocic will also probably try to complete takedowns when striking breaks present themselves, as he is a force to be reckoned with on the mat.
Just like every MMA fight, once again—but especially every heavyweight MMA fight—there’s no telling how this one plays out. To walk away with his belt (and break the UFC record for consecutive heavyweight title defenses in the process), Miocic will have to avoid the shocking punches of Ngannou.
UFC 220 is once again scheduled to go-down from Boston, Massachusetts on 20 January. The main and co-main events described here will take place at the top of the pay-per-view main card, which begins at 10 PM in the east and 7 PM in the west.
Thanks for reading and enjoy the fights!
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