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London Fight by Fight Preview

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FABRICIO WERDUM VS ALEXANDER VOLKOV
Alexander Volkov has made a quiet move into the heavyweight top ten thanks to three UFC wins over Tim Johnson, Roy Nelson and Stefan Struve, and you have to think that a fourth victory, this one over Fabricio Werdum, would put “Drago” into the title picture. And at 6-foot-7, he is a nightmare matchup for anyone, but you can say the same thing about Werdum, a former heavyweight champion who can finish fights anywhere and is staying busy since losing his belt to Stipe Miocic in 2016. An important match in the division for sure.

JIMI MANUWA VS JAN BLACHOWICZ
This rematch of a 2015 bout won by Manuwa may not be one that fight fans initially expected for this London event, but it’s a lot more interesting than it was nearly three years ago, and a lot of that has to do with Blachowicz. Coming off back-to-back wins over Devin Clark and Jared Cannonier, Blachowicz is showing the best form of his UFC career, and given that he’s already gone three rounds with the power-punching “Poster Boy,” he may have a new level of confidence that he can spoil Manuwa’s London homecoming.

TOM DUQUESNOY VS TERRION WARE
Terrion Ware hasn’t had the best luck in his first two UFC bouts, getting matched up with current bantamweight contender Cody Stamann and hot prospect Sean O’Malley. But the California veteran was competitive with both and he’s confident that he’s sewn up the holes in his game leading into fight number three against another rising star in Tom Duquesnoy. Paris’ “FireKid” is coming off a loss himself, dropping a split decision to Stamann in October, so he’s got plenty of motivation to right his ship, setting the stage for an exciting bantamweight battle.

RELATED CONTENT: Volkov – This Fight Brings Me Closert to the BeltWerdum – I Want to Finish the Fight | Duquesnoy reveling in his return to Europe

LEON EDWARDS VS PETER SOBOTTA
London fans will be in for an interesting clash between two of the more underrated fighters in the welterweight division when No. 15-ranked Leon Edwards faces Peter Sobotta. The veteran Sobotta looked better than ever in stopping Ben Saunders last May, showing some striking to go along with his stellar ground game. Edwards is another fighter who can do it all, though, and as the wins have been piling up for “Rocky,” his game continues to evolve, making him a tough out at 170 pounds.

JOHN PHILLIPS VS CHARLES BYRD
It may turn into a firefight pretty fast when newcomers John Phillips and Charles Byrd collide this weekend. Byrd may have ended his two fights on Dana White’s Tuesday Night Contender Series by submission, but with the nickname “Kid Dynamite,” he loves to throw down, which is fitting for this bout, considering that he’s taking on a Welshman who used to be dubbed “The White Mike Tyson.” Fire away, gentlemen.

DANNY ROBERTS VS OLIVER ENKAMP
A man who is never in a bad fight, Danny Roberts returns to the city of his birth to face Oliver Enkamp, and his success in this bout likely has everything to do with his willingness to take his foot off the gas if necessary and pick his shots. Because if he goes in all guns blazing as usual and doesn’t get his foe out of there, it could give Enkamp his opportunity to surge into the lead and take over the fight.

JACK MARSHMAN VS BRAD SCOTT
Wales’ Jack Marshman and England’s Brad Scott have been erratic over the last year, making this a pivotal bout for each fighter. You know what that means – two welterweights willing to leave it all in the Octagon in order to get a new winning streak started in front of European fans.

DANNY HENRY VS HAKEEM DAWODU
Unbeaten Canadian kickboxer Hakeem Dawodu has the platform to follow in the footsteps of fellow strikers Israel Adesanya and Curtis Millender in his Octagon debut this weekend, and the talent as well, but as Scottish standout Danny Henry showed in his first UFC bout against Daniel Teymur, “The Hatchet” is a tough man to beat.

PAUL CRAIG VS MAGOMED ANKALAEV
The latest Dagestan native to make his way to the UFC, unbeaten Magomed Ankalaev is expected to make a lot of noise in the light heavyweight division, but first he has to get by Scottish submission specialist Paul Craig, who has the ground game to turn a showcase debut into a disappointing loss.

STEVIE RAY VS KAJAN JOHNSON
It’s a solid matchup in the lightweight division when Stevie Ray faces Kajan Johnson. Johnson is on a three-fight winning streak that includes a knockout of Adriano Martins in September, and he does have fight-changing power, making him a tough out for Scotland’s Ray, who is coming off a knockout defeat at the hands of Paul Felder.

MARK GODBEER VS DMITRY SOSNOVSKIY
Unbeaten Russian prospect Dmitry Sosnovskiy makes his long awaited UFC debut on Saturday, and he won’t have to look too far to find Mark “Hand of” Godbeer, whose aggressive striking attack will either get Sosnovskiy early or leave him open for this ground-and-pound specialist to do his thing.

NASRAT HAQPARAST VS NAD NARIMANI
Call it a gut feeling, but the Fight of the Night this weekend might be taking place in this one, as Nasrat Haqparast battles Nad Narimani. Narimani is coming in on a week’s notice to replace the injured Alex Reyes, and he usually competes at 145 pounds, not 155, but he’s no stranger to upsetting the apple cart, having beaten the highly-regarded Paddy Pimblett in his most recent bout. Throw him in with Haqparast, who has ended all his pro wins by knockout, and fireworks may ensue.



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