Fabricio Werdum and Marcin Tybura headline the latest card from the UFC in Australia this Saturday. The two heavyweights are attempting to position themselves for a run at the title. Werdum has already had his reign, but Tybura is still attempting to climb the ladder.
This latest rung will likely be the trickiest he's faced. Werdum rebounded from a loss to Alistair Overeem with a quick submission win over Walt Harris in October. He's back quickly to try and derail Tybura's rise.
Here are the 10 things you should know about Saturday's card.
How to Watch
Odds, Predictions And DraftKings Picks
|Matchup||Weight Class||Odds||Prediction||DraftKings Pick?|
|Anthony Hamilton Vs. Adam Wieczorek||Heavyweight||Wieczorek -160, Hamilton +130||Wieczorek by TKO||Wieczorek|
|Jenel Lausa Vs. Eric Shelton||Men's Flyweight||Shelton -400, Lausa +300||Shelton by UD|
|Alex Chambers Vs. Nadia Kaseem||Strawweight||Kaseem -150, Chambers +125||Kaseem by TKO||Kaseem|
|Damien Brown Vs. Frank Camacho||Lightweight||Brown -114, -114 Camacho||Brown by TKO||Brown|
|Rashad Coulter Vs. Tai Tuivasa||Heavyweight||Tuivasa -187, Coulter +165||Coulter by TKO||Coulter|
|Nik Lentz Vs. Will Brooks||Lightweight||Brooks -315, Lentz +270||Brooks by SUB|
|Ryan Benoit Vs. Ashkan Mokhtarian||Men's Flyweight||Benoit -221, Mokhtarian +179||Benoit by SUB|
|Alexander Volkanovski Vs. Shane Young||Featherweight/ Lightweight||Volkanovski -526, Young +375||Volkanovski by TKO|
|Elias Theodorou Vs. Daniel Kelly||Middleweight||Theodorou -221, Kelly +179||Theodorou by UD|
|Jake Matthews Vs. Bojan Velickovic||Welterweight||Matthews -169, Velickovic +141||Matthews by UD||Matthews|
|Tim Means Vs. Belal Muhammad||Welterweight||Means -248, Muhammad +192||Means by TKO|
|Bec Rawlings Vs. Jessica Rose-Clark||Women's Flyweight||Rawlings -145, Clark +118||Rawlings by UD||Rawlings|
|Fabricio Werdum Vs. Marcin Tybura||Heavyweight||Werdum -286, Tybura +190||Werdum by SUB|
The Heavyweight Main Event Is Still On
Despite the unfortunate incident involving Werdum and welterweight contender Colby Covington, the main event is still on.
Werdum is reportedly potentially facing assault charges for his role in the fracas, but up to now, there's been no talk of pulling him from the main event. We'll be monitoring the situation moving forward to see what happens with Werdum on Saturday and immediately after the event.
Three fighters on the card were grossly overweight at the weigh-ins and another missed by two pounds. Both Camacho and Kaseem came in four pounds overweight.
Benoit was almost as bad as he came in three pounds over. Rose-Clark was two pounds over for this her UFC debut. There was no word on any of the fighters being removed from the card, but the inability to make weight will result in the forfeiture of a portion of their purses.
This will be Kaseem's UFC debut. Here are the entire weigh-in results:
You can watch the entire weigh-in below.
UFC History In Australia
Saturday's event will be the 12th from the promotion in Australia. It's the sixth in the Qudos Bank Arena (formerly known as Acer and AllPhones Arena). Eight of the fighters have fought in Australia for the UFC in the past. Matthews and Kelly have the most fights in Australia for the promotion at five apiece.
Matthews is 3-2 in his home country while Kelly has one loss in five fights before his countrymen. Rawlings is the only fighter on the card with two or more fights in Australia and no losses Down Under.
Ranked, Undefeated And Fighters With Long Win Streaks
Werdum and Tybura are the only ranked fighters on the card. Werdum is No. 2 while Tybura sits at No. 8 heading into the event. Tybura has won three fights in a row and that run has afforded him this shot at one of the best heavyweights in the promotion.
That's the longest UFC win streak for any fighter on the card, but Volkanovski has won 14 consecutive fights overall and both scraps he's had in the UFC. Tuivasa (7-0) and Kaseem (4-0) are the only fighters scheduled to compete whose records are completely unblemished.
Both are making their UFC debuts on the card.
Fighters In Desperate Need of a Win
Brooks came to the UFC with some fanfare, but he's lost his last two fights after winning his debut. If the former Bellator champion hopes to rise to similar heights in the UFC, he needs to beat Lentz. Matthews is another fighter hoping to avoid a three-fight losing streak. He has long been considered one of the best young prospects in the UFC.
At 23 years old, it's time he starts to get his arrow pointing upward again. A loss to the dangerous Velickovic could be disastrous. Rawlings has also lost two in a row. She's a major draw in Australia, but she has to be getting concerned about a potential release if she continues to look less than stellar in the Octagon.
Speaking of fighters treading on dangerous ground as it pertains to the infamous cut line, Hamilton has to be in a back-against-the-wall situation. The American heavyweight has lost three in a row with each of the defeats coming by way of stoppage.
If he loses to Wieczorek, it might be his last fight in the UFC.
Prelim Fight You Don't Want To Miss
Brown and Camacho aren't contenders and they probably never will be, but they could be on the cusp of delivering a memorable fight. Both of these men are straight-ahead brawlers who have no qualms trading shots and slugging it out with an opponent.
If I had to pick one fight that looks like the best of the night on paper, it would be the Brown-Camacho bout.
Bec Rawlings Could Only Co-Main Event In Australia
Unless you're Australian, you probably looked at the co-main event with some level of confusion. Rawlings-Clark isn't exactly a tantalizing matchup. However, Rawlings is immensely popular in Australia and the country has become one of the strongest regions for the UFC.
Fans elsewhere can only hope the fight is better than expected.
Werdum Will Keep His Focus On Tybura
Many are concerned about Werdum keeping his focus on Tybura after the well-publicized skirmish with Covington. In this interview with Submission Radio, Werdum assures everyone he will have no issues tuning out the distractions.
Meanwhile, the UFC issued a statement saying it would investigate the situation. However, if the Cris Cyborg-Angela Magana incident is any precedence, neither man will be disciplined by the promotion. That said, Werdum could still face legal issues as Covington reportedly pressed charges for the alleged assault.
Werdum is a pro whose game is more advanced than Tybura's and he's far more experienced. I see him pushing the baggage to the side long enough to secure a submission win over Tybura.