UFC Fight Night 39 Preview

ufc_fn39The UFC continues to move around the world at a rapid pace this year in their goal to touch as many places as they can throughout 2014. This time they will return to Abu Dhabi for their third fight on UFC Fight Pass and their second fight in the city. In 2010 Abu Dhabi was the emerging super city that was surpassing Las Vegas on the world map as the place to go to do anything you could dream of and now it has been that place for years. So the UFC is a natural fit in Sin City 2.0 as they once again travel to the desert for another fight. After a great debut with plenty of star power at UFC 112 in 2010 the UFC will return with two heavyweights trying to get back into a title hunt. Minotauro Nogueira and Roy Nelson are both seemingly in the same place in their careers. Both are legends in MMA and they have both had some issues in their recent years. Minotauro is the legend in the sport from a place that seems to crank out legends year after year. The Nogueira’s are known worldwide for their training and Brazilian fighters have come through their training centre for years. “Big Nog” was the leader of this movement in Brazil and would do most of his damage in the UFC. He would win the Heavyweight Championship in 2008 and was considered the best BJJ practitioner in the weight class. Ever since that championship win in 2008 though, Nogueira has not seen a whole lot of success. He has won fights and lost them to create a record that has kept him away from fighting for the title again. The 37-year-old does not have a lot of time left as injuries have continued to plague him as he gets older and needs to make a run soon if he hopes to fight for the title again. Losing his last fight against Fabricio Werdum via submission last year, Nogueira is looking to get back on the winning track before it is too late. In his way will be another fighter that has had a long and illustrious career in MMA as he faces off against Roy Nelson. Nelson would not do a lot of his work in the UFC as he would spend the majority of his career in the IFL. It wasn’t until The Ultimate Fighter 10 when most UFC fans would learn his name. Nelson would represent the most experienced fighter in the season and his big personality only matched by his midsection immediately made him the most loved and most hated fighter in the season. He would win the season and would begin a climb to the Heavyweight championship. After three straight wins it seemed that Nelson was another knockout away from earning a title shot. Then he would take losses to Stipe Miocic and Daniel Cormier would set his plans off of the rails for Nelson who is now looking to get back on track before it is too late as the 37 years old only has a few years left, much like Nogueira. Both fighters are looking for some redemptions coming off of losses and hoping to begin a winning streak by unseating a champion. They will look to do it in very different ways though as this fight is a classic matchup of striker and grappler. Nogueira is a prototypical Brazilian fighter with enough stand up game to earn KOs but with much better ground game than most. Nogueira’s BJJ is great and he has submitted some great fighters as he will be looking to take this fight to the ground. Meanwhile Roy Nelson has the power in his right hand to knockout fighters with the best chins. He continues to earn knockout bonuses every time he fights and he will try to do the same against Nogueira to get back on the winning track. It will be a matchup of two legends and two very different styles but there is one thing that tends to happen a lot more when fighters get older. Their chin begins to fade away and they are more susceptible to the KO. Even the most durable fighters have seen more Kos in their later years and for Minotauro Nogueira that is not a good sign. He has shown signs of his durability fading and with both fighters starting the fight on the feet means Roy Nelson has the immediate advantage. Nogueira still has some fight in him but it seems as though Nelson has the advantage and will take the win with a knockout in round 2.

The last time the UFC went to Abu Dhabi they would bring a loaded card including two title fights that would make for a big splash in the city. In their return four years later the UFC would not bring the same powerhouse fighters they did the first time with a UFC Fight Night. Despite no title fights and none of the top fighters making the trip the UFC would provide fans from the country with one of the most exciting fighters in the history of the UFC. Clay Guida is a fan favorite that seems to always put on some of the most exciting fights every time he is on a card. No matter if he wins or loses Guida puts on great fights and that has given him what seems like a permanent roster spot. The UFC has always valued fighters that can win and fighters that can put on fights that the fans want to see. Guida was a fighter that could win but recently he has struggled to stay on the winning end of fights. Guida is nowhere near a title shot and in most cases would just be trying to stay in the UFC. That is not the case for Guida who seems to be a UFC fighter until he retires and enters the Hall of Fame if he can continue to put on some of the best fights in every card. Guida looks to continue his streak of exciting fights when he takes on Tatsuya Kawajiri who enters the UFC octagon for the second time. Kawajiri is one of the most promising fighters in the Bantamweight division as he is riding a 6-fight win streak that included a submission win over Sean Soriano in his UFC debut. Whether he likes it or not he will be in a very fast paced and exciting fight that he will have to survive and take advantage of if he hopes to win. This fight might not be for a title but it is one that should get plenty of fans excited as any time that Clay Guida enters the octagon it promises to be a good fight.


Fight Card

Main Event:
Minotauro Nogueira vs. Roy “Big Country” Nelson (UFC Fight Pass)

Main Card:
Clay “The Carpenter” Guida vs. Tatsuya “The Crusher” Kawajiri (UFC Fight Pass)

John “Doomsday” Howard vs. Ryan LaFlare (UFC Fight Pass)

Ramsey Nijem vs. Beneil Dariush (UFC Fight Pass)

Jared “The Big Show” Rosholt vs. Daniel Omielanczuk (UFC Fight Pass)

Rani Yahya vs. Johnny “Brutal” Bedford (UFC Fight Pass)

Thales Leites vs. Trevor “Hot Sauce” Smith (UFC Fight Pass)

Chris Camozzi vs. Andrew “Highlight” Craig (UFC Fight Pass)

Alan Omer vs. Jim “The Beast” Alers (UFC Fight Pass)

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