UFC 201 Preview

ufc-201There is a constant tug in combat sports that has made the entire world of combat sports a strange one.

That tug is between the big money-making fights and the fights that are just well-deserved.

At any point in time in any combat sports there are a handful of superstars and every now and then they all reside in the same weight class.

When that happens there is a massive demand for promotions to pit two superstars together to make a massive fight.

It is a fight that a lot of people want to watch and a fight that a lot of people will pay to watch.

It can make a lot of people a lot of money and for pure money-making purposes, they make a lot of sense.

In some combat sports, it can be difficult to get those two fighters together, see Pacquiao-Mayweather, while in others it is pretty easy.

Some promotions delay these fights to increase the talk around the fights and build the interest even more.

Not every one of these fights makes complete sense when looking at it though a pure sports lens where competition is king.

Sometimes a fighter has just earned their spot because they have been around and fought everyone that they need to fight.

They may not be the best fighter in the division and may not be that well-known star that drives pay-per-view buys but they are a fighter that deserves his or her shot.

The UFC is not immune to this issue as they continue to get more attention from the regular media and are getting that attention because of their stars.

Putting on big fights between big names makes people pay attention and for a promotion constantly trying to be considered mainstream that attention is crucial.

Still, they can’t ignore the good fighters that aren’t stars or they will be without fighters quickly and when those stars eventually lose there will be nobody to take their spots.

UFC 201 is a perfect expression of this constant struggle to put on big fights and to give good fighters their chance at big fights.

Robbie Lawlor is not the biggest star in the UFC but he is a champion and a fan favourite for most MMA fans.

He is a champion that has yet to fall back on what got him there as he has constantly been in wars and will look to continue that pattern as a champion.

He is not the biggest name but he is a name and for many his name is enough to deserve a big name fight.

Many wanted to see him take on a younger fighter in Stephen Thompson who has launched himself directly into the title conversation and many want to see if he can be the new dominant champion.mma-sidebar.fw

Instead, the UFC went with Tyron Woodley, a fighter that most casual fans don’t know much about and won’t get excited about.

For the UFC it is a fight that had to be made as Woodley has been sitting at the top of the UFC welterweight rankings for years.

A winner of four of his last five fights, he has remained one of the top fighters in the division but every time it seemed like he could get a shot the UFC overlooked him for someone else.

He has been right on the edge of a title shot for years but has never been able to get the shot that he wants.

Now is finally the time though as he gets his shot at the title at UFC 201 and hopes to prove to everyone that he is a deserving challenger.

The latest UFC event is not gaining a lot of interest from many but the match-up could be a good one.

Everyone is looking past Woodley and if that includes Lawler the champion could end up where every other champion has ended up over the past two years, without a belt.

Woodley is a former All-American wrestler at the University of Missouri who translated his athleticism into a great stand-up game as well.

He has that athleticism makes him a dangerous fighter but if he gets into a war with Lawler he might be in trouble.

Lawler has made his reputation on getting into and winning wars in the octagon as he has the power and the chin to stand with the best welterweights in the promotion.

If Woodley gets into that kind of fight it could be a short night but if he fights his own fights and mixes things up while keeping a good range it could be another massive shift in the UFC.

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