UFC 217 Preview

ufc-217UFC 217 is a card just meant to be one of the best ever, but often that has come up short for the UFC in the past.

It seems like every time the UFC puts together a big fight card with three title fights and plenty more big fights things don’t go all that well.

This time around everything is in place for things to go right as there is something more than just a championship on the line in every title fight.

The night will start with a woman looking to become the most dominant female champion in the history of the UFC.

Granted women’s fighting has not had the longest history but with Ronda Rousey holding the record of 6 title defences in the women’s bantamweight division she has been the most dominant female champion for a long time.

Many debate whether or not she truly is the greatest ever and although nobody will ever be able to take away her impact on women entering the UFC, Joanna Jędrzejczyk is quickly becoming one of the greatest ever.

Since she won the strawweight title in 2015 she has mowed through the best the UFC has had to offer with few coming close to beating her.

The striking she brings to the octagon is some of the best in the women’s section regardless of weight class and in her sixth title defence, she looks to continue to clean out the division.

She takes on Rose Namajunas who is going to be a tough test as she is one of the better strawweights on the ground and nobody has test Jędrzejczyk on the ground.

Getting her there is a challenge as nobody has been able to overcome the offensive output on the feet although Namajunas will likely try and see if it helps her end the reign of Jędrzejczyk.

The next championship fight will feature two former teammates turned bitter enemies as Cody Garbrandt defends his belt for the first time against T.J. Dillashaw.

This one is very personal as Garbrandt and Team Alpha Male have thought of Dillashaw as a traitor after he left the team to go with his striking coach, Duane Ludwig, to Denver.

The falling out has been very public and Team Alpha Male, including Garbrandt, have been outspoken regarding their feelings towards Dillashaw who has responded mainly without an understanding of why there is so much hate.

Now Garbrandt gets to represent his team and take on Dillashaw for the title in the end of a grudge match that has been brewing for years.

Those two fights alone could be entertaining enough to tune in but the fight leading the card will be the third title fight and the one that many don’t fully understand.

It is being built as the return of a legend as Georges St. Pierre will make his return to the Octagon after almost four years out of the fight world.

In 2013, St. Pierre walked away from the UFC claiming issues with his mental state, claiming he had OCD that caused him to obsess over his next opponent the second he finished his previous fight, and issues with the UFC’s lack of proper PED testing.

Now with a break to clear his head and with the UFC going with his request for Olympic-level drug testing he returns to the UFC.

Of course, he also wasn’t going to return for a small fight as he was one of the best pound-for-pound fighters in the world when he left.

The UFC gave him a big fight as he is set to take on Michael Bisping for the Middleweight title but that confused some.mma-sidebar.fw

St. Pierre hadn’t fought in over three years and never fought at the middleweight division yet he jumped over all of the contenders to fight for the title.

It wasn’t the right move for the UFC according to many because even as a major fight it wasn’t that big with many of the newer fans not even knowing who GSP was.

There were much bigger fights and much better fights to make but the UFC went with St. Pierre-Bisping bringing a legend back that not many know about.

The question now becomes whether or not St. Pierre is anywhere close to what he used to be because if he is this fight will be huge but if not it is a waste of a title fight.

When he left St. Pierre had defended the welterweight belt 9 times and had cleaned out the welterweight division with no challengers left to fight.

He will go down as one of the best ever and if he comes back in somewhat the same form, Bisping is going to have some major trouble.

St. Pierre made his way through the rankings with some of the best MMA wrestling ever and if Bisping gets taken down he will be in a bad spot.

It is tough to take Bisping down though and his technical boxing has only been getting better making him a dominant champion nearing the end of his career.

If St. Pierre can’t shake off the rust and the game has passed him by this could be an embarrassing comeback that will go down as a terrible decision for the promotion.

The night features some great title fights but there are some questions as this has rarely worked out in the past.

Will Jędrzejczyk run through Namajunas for an easy win? Can Garbrandt-Dillashaw live up to the hype? Is St. Pierre still at that level after four years away from the sport?

All of the questions can change the night and make a packed card a bust or the can’t-miss card of the year.

ufc-217

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