UFC Fight Night: Cerrone vs. Medeiros Preview
A preview of Sunday’s UFC Fight Night card, set to take place in Austin, Texas.
Updated: Feb. 16, 2018 • 12:40 PM ET
Donald Cerrone (right) is looking to bounce back from controversial losses.
The UFC will head to Austin, Texas on Sunday for UFC Fight Night, featuring a welterweight bout between a fan favorite and a fighter who isn’t afraid to trade punches.
No. 11 ranked welterweight Donald Cerrone will face No. 15 Yancy Medeiros in what is expected to be a high-action fight. Cerrone will attempt to rebound from his third loss in a row, suffered at the hands of Darren Till in October. Prior to the losing streak, the 34-year-old former lightweight title challenger found new life in the welterweight division by winning four straight, and one of his losses during the recent skid was to former champion Robbie Lawler in a fight that many people think Cerrone won.
Cerrone’s reputation for wanting to fight anywhere, anytime, has made him a fan-favorite. However, the approach may have hindered his performance of late. His losing streak started in January 2017 when he was KO’d by Jorge Masvidal, a little more than a month after winning a brutal back-and-forth war with Matt Brown. Cerrone averaged four fights a year from 2013 to 2016, while fighting three times in 2017, making him one of the most active fighters in UFC history. That kind of mileage will wear on any fighter.
A win this weekend would put Cerrone back on track, but a loss may be a sign of the end for the man they call “Cowboy.” He has collected key victories over Brown, Benson Henderson, Eddie Alvarez, Edson Barboza and Jeremy Stephens.
Medeiros is on a three-fight winning streak, most recently competing in one of the best fights of 2017, in which he won by third-round knockout over Alex Oliveira at UFC 218. Medeiros (15-4, 1 NC) has won four of his last six fights and showed tremendous heart against Oliveira, as he was badly hurt but was able to recover.
Should Medeiros find a way to win on Sunday, it will be the biggest win of his career and likely land him a higher spot in the welterweight rankings.
Sunday’s co-main event will be a heavyweight showdown between No. 7 ranked Derrick Lewis and No. 9 Marcin Tybura.
Lewis is coming off a knockout loss to No. 6 Mark Hunt in June, but he won six straight prior to that fight. Before the loss to Hunt, Lewis may have been one win away from a possible title shot, so a win on Sunday would put him back on track in an aging division.
Tybura is coming off a unanimous decision loss to former champion Fabricio Werdum in November. Though he lost, Tybura surprised many people with his lack of intimidation, while fighting the former champion on short notice. Tybura tried to make things interesting on the feet, but it wasn’t enough to out-strike Werdum. He’s 3-2 in the UFC and needs a win to stay relevant in the heavyweight division.
Lightweight fight - (#12) James Vick vs. (#14) Francisco Trinaldo
The main card will also feature a lightweight fight between No. 12 James Vick and No. 14 Francisco Trinaldo.
Riding a three-fight win streak, having recently defeated Joe Duffy by second round knockout at UFC 217 in November, Vick is 8-1 in the UFC and 12-1 overall. His only loss was at the hands of Beneil Dariush by knockout at UFC 199.
Trinaldo is 8-2 in his last 10 fights, most recently defeating Jim Miller in October. Before his loss to Kevin Lee in March, Trinaldo won seven straight fights, dating back to September 2014. The 39-year-old Trinaldo could likely land a spot in the top 10 of the lightweight division with a win over a flourishing prospect such as Vick.
The rest of the main card
Welterweight fight - Thiago Alves vs. Curtis Millender
Featherweight fight - Steven Peterson vs. Brandon Davis
Lightweight fight - Sage Northcutt vs. Thibault Gouti
Lightweight fight - Jared Gordon vs. Diego Ferreira
Welterweight fight - Geoff Neal vs. Brian Camozzi
Flyweight fight - Roberto Sanchez vs. Joby Sanchez
Bantamweight fight - No. 13 Sarah Moras vs. Lucie Pudilova
UFC Fight Pass Early Prelims
Welterweight fight - Joshua Burkman vs. Alex Morono
Middleweight fight - Oskar Piechota vs. Tim Williams