UFC Fight Night 58 Preview

ufc_fn58The UFC travels to Brazil to close out their 2014 season and in the middle of a big few months of the UFC schedule. This card will not feature some of the big names that are coming up in the schedule but it will be a night of legends against up and comers. It is the constant story in the UFC as top names continue to take on the new rising stars in hopes to extend their time and to remain among the best fighters in the UFC. They are the fighters that have risen to the top of the divisions and many times have won a championship already. They continue to fight to remain among the best fighters in the division and meet a never-ending run of new challengers. The fight game is always evolving and for these veteran fighters it is a challenge to keep up with the consistently improving fighters that continue to rise through the ranks and look to take a veteran out. That way these younger fighters can put a big name on their record that will give them a boost towards fighting for a title. At UFC Fight Night 58 two fighters will be playing the role of the veterans while two more fighters will be representing the up and coming fighters. The veterans will be former champions Lyoto Machida and Renan Barão while the rising fighters will be C.B. Dollaway and Mitch Gagnon. Machida and Dollaway will square-off in a middleweight matchup that is sure to have the Brazilian crowd heavily on one side. Machida is a legend in Brazil and that has a lot to do with his reign as the UFC Light Heavyweight champion. He has been to the top but has not been able to get back despite his efforts to get another belt. After losing the Light Heavyweight belt in 2010, Machida has been back in title fights but losses to Jon Jones and Chris Weidman have ended his hopes of earning another title. Machida can get back to the title but he will need to put together a number of wins after his last fight ended with a loss to Weidman. He tries to get back on track after that loss but will need to do so against a fighter that has looked very impressive lately. Dollaway has won two in a row and in both of his wins he looked better than he has ever looked. Now he is heading into hostile territory to take on a Brazilian legend and former champion. It is not going to be an easy task for “The Doberman” but if he can get the win against Machida and move up in the middleweight rankings closer to his goal of earning a title shot. Anytime a fighter takes on Machida the challenge is always the same, how do you beat the man with one of the most awkward fighting styles in the UFC? Machida’s karate training has given him a stance that not many have and a striking style all his own. It is tough to combat his style but it is not unheard of. Dollaway will look to be the next fighter to unravel the mystery of Machida and will try to do so by eliminated his striking game altogether. Dollaway is a wrestler who has evolved into a ground and pound fighter. If he can take Machida down he may be able to grind out a win but he will need to be aware of BJJ of Machida. It will be a tough fight as Machida always presents a tough test for anyone in the octagon. As good as Dollaway has looked in the last few fights it doesn’t seem like he will have what it takes to beat one of the greatest fighters in UFC history. Machida will take the win and he will do it methodically like he does in most of his fights. With a unanimous decision win Machida will once again enter the title conversation in the middleweight division.

The main event won’t be the only veteran against a rising star as the former Bantamweight champion, Barão looks to get back on the winning track after losing his title. A loss to T.J. Dillashaw shocked the UFC as Barão was expected to rule the division for a while but Dillashaw got the better of him. After a rematch was scraped due to an injury to Barão, Dillashaw went on to fight and defend his title. Barao meanwhile was left on the outside looking in trying to get his title back by finding his way to another title fight. That path will start with a fight against Gagnon who remains one of the most underrated fighters in the UFC. Not many have seen Gagnon fight as he has spent his brief time in the UFC on the undercard of Canadian fights. He has been impressive in those fights though, winning his last four fights. He has looked like a true contender in his last few fights submitting three of the fighters he has faced. Now he launches up the division and earns a spot on the main card in the co-main event against a champion that was on top of the division only a few months ago. That is a massive change in competition might prove to be too much but it will only add to the difficulty of the night for Gagnon. He will also fight outside of Canada for the first time since entering the UFC and against one of their heroes in Barão. The odds are stacked against Gagnon and in a big way as he has seemingly nothing going for him but that also might be his best asset. Nobody is going to expect Gagnon to take the win as Barão seems sure to head to another title shot. The striking and BJJ of Barao makes him one of the more well-rounded fighters in the division. Gagnon will look to take the striking away and overpower him on the mat with his superior wrestling. He has some of the best wrestling in the division and has proven it through his submission wins. If he can grind out he may just find his way to the biggest win of his career. It is a long shot but it could be another great underdog story for 2014 unless Barão takes the win and earns another shot at the title.

Fight Card

Main Event:
Lyoto “The Dragon” Machida vs. CB “The Doberman” Dolloway (Sportsnet 360/FOX Sports 1)

Main Card:
Renan “The Baron” Barão vs. Mitch “The Machine” Gagnon (Sportsnet 360/FOX Sports 1)

Patrick “Durkin” Cummins vs. Antônio Carlos “Cara de Sapato” Júnior (Sportsnet 360/FOX Sports 1)

Rashid “Highlander” Magomedov vs. Elias “Xuxu” Silvério (Sportsnet 360/FOX Sports 1)

Erick “Indio” Silva vs. Mike “Biggie” Rhodes (Sportsnet 360/FOX Sports 1)

Tom “Stoneface” Niinimaki vs. Renato “Moicano” Carneiro (Sportsnet 360/FOX Sports 1)

Marcos “Pezão” Rogério de Lima vs. Igor “The Duke” Pokrajac (Sportsnet 360/FOX Sports 1)

Daniel Sarafian vs. Antônio “Junior Alpha” Dos Santos Jr. (Sportsnet 360/FOX Sports 1)

Darren “The Damage” Elkins vs. Hacran “Barnabe” Dias (Sportsnet 360/FOX Sports 1)

Yuta “Ulka” Sasaki vs, Leandro “Brodinho” Issi (Sportsnet 360/FOX Sports 1)

Marcio “Lyoto” Alexander Jr. vs. Tim “The Dirty Bird” Means (UFC Fight Pass)

Rodney “Jake” Collier vs. Vitor “Lex Luthor” Miranda (UFC Fight Pass)

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