UFC FIGHT NIGHT: BLAYDES vs LEWIS 

 

  • Will Blaydes get a title shot after UFC 260 comes to a close? 
  • What will Lewis have to do to get Dana White’s attention for a title shot? 

UFC Fight Night

Curtis Blaydes #2 (Heavyweight) will be taking on Derrick Lewis #4 in Las Vegas at the APEX this weekend. The stakes are high for this fight as Curtis, “The Razor” and Derrick “The Black Beast” try to prove why they deserve a title shot as Stipe Miocic and top contender Francis Ngannou battle for the title at UFC 260. Lewis may need one more fight after Blaydes to prove why he deserves a title shot.

Of course, Jon Jones coming out of retirement would alter their plans. However, it would be an understatement not to look forward to the main event. 

UFC Fight Night: CURTIS BLAYDES PREVIEW

He may not be the most entertaining fighter as of late, but he can certainly violently finishes fighters. His last fight against Alexander Volkov surprisingly did not end in a finish as Curtis outpaced his opponent, and Volkov looked to be out of gas towards the end of the fight. Before that showdown, he defeated both Junior dos Santos and Shamil Abdurakhimov by KO.

Some critics believe that Blaydes’ cardio is a concern, but he has proven to be the division’s best wrestler. As stated before, it may not be the most entertaining form of fighting, but Blaydes’s relentless pressure mixed in with phenomenal wrestling abilities should not be underestimated in this upcoming fight. Many analysts believe that his takedowns and top control may be a problem for Derrick Lewis. 

Fighter Stats 

  • SLpM: 3.55
  • Str. Acc.: 53%
  • SApM: 1.73
  • Str. Def: 57%
  • TD Avg.: 6.98
  • TD Acc.: 55%
  • TD Def.: 33%
  • Sub. Avg.: 0.0

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UFC Fight Night: DERRICK LEWIS PREVIEW

After his win over Aleksei Oleinik, he is on a three-fight winning streak. There’s no doubt His cardio will be tested against Curtis Blaydes as he has been susceptible to takedowns in the past. His ground game has always been a major weakness; however, his relentless and unpredictable offensive striking ability makes him a scary man to try and takedown. Like Daniel Cormier, Fighters have made it seem easy to keep Lewis pinned to the ground, but his striking force is not easy to overlook. Although his ground and pound game may be vicious, most of his opportunities do not come from takedowns but rather from knockdowns, as seen in the Olenik bout. Lewis’s aggressive boxing can sometimes lead to bad takedown defense, which seems to disappear early in his fights and pose a significant problem for him this weekend. 

Fighter Stats

  • SLpM: 2.64
  • Str. Acc.: 50%
  • SApM: 2.09
  • Str. Def: 44%
  • TD Avg.: 0.54
  • TD Acc.: 26%
  • TD Def.: 52%
  • Sub. Avg.: 0.0

Blaydes may not have the same striking ability compared to his opponent, but four of his last seven wins have come from via a KO due to his ground and pound. To add to that, Lewis’s four of his last five defeats have come via KO. Although Lewis is strong and could potentially get out of a few scenarios when on the ground, Blaydes could ultimately tire Lewis out by round three and win by maintaining control of the half or full mount. 

There’s no denying that this fight’s outcome is huge for the future of the heavyweight division. With Heavyweight champion Stipe Miocic and contender Francis Ngannou get set to fight for the belt on March 27th, there’s a lot of belief within the MMA community that the loser of that fight will most likely fight the winner of Derrick Lewis and Curtis Blaydes in the future. 

Prediction: Blaydes to win via KO/TKO; Odds are not out yet.