Derrick Lewis Looking to Make a Statement at UFC Fight Night
UFC heavyweight Derrick Lewis has a chance to further rise in the division’s ranks on Saturday at UFC Fight Night.
Updated: June 8, 2017 • 12:05 PM ET
Derrick Lewis could be in line for a title shot with a win on Saturday.
“The Black Beast” hopes to continue his rise in the heavyweight division.
Derrick Lewis has slowly emerged as a premier personality and contender in the UFC’s heavyweight division. If he wants to continue his climb in the rankings, he’ll have to get past heavy-hitting knockout artist Mark Hunt at UFC Fight Night on Saturday. To make matters more complicated for Lewis, he’ll have to travel to Hunt’s hometown of Auckland, New Zealand to claim victory.
Lewis is currently riding a six-fight win streak and is ranked No. 6 in the heavyweight division. He earned Fight of the Night honors in February after his second-round TKO of Travis Browne. Overall, Lewis is 9-2 in the UFC and has used his playful personality and humor to win-over fans during pre- and post-fight interviews.
Meanwhile, Hunt has had an up-and-down career in the UFC. He has had shining moments, including walk-off knockout victories. Hunt has also had not-so-great moments, during which he was on the other end of the knockout. In his last six fights, Hunt is 2-3 with one no contest.
In Hunt’s last fight at UFC 209, fans saw him fall victim to a vicious Alistair Overeem knee that put his lights completely out. The other losses in his last six bouts came to current heavyweight champion Stipe Miocic and former champion Fabricio Werdum.
It was Hunt’s no contest fight against WWE superstar Brock Lesnar at UFC 200 that landed him in mainstream news. He filed a lawsuit in January in the U.S. District Court against the UFC, the corporation's president, Dana White, and Brock Lesnar. The suit accuses the parties of racketeering, fraud, negligence and a breach of contract against the organization after Lesnar tested positive for clomiphene, a banned substance.
Last week, the suit survived a motion to dismiss by the defendants, and last Thursday, Hunt’s attorneys filed an amended complaint in U.S. District Court (District of Nevada).
Hunt has come close to a UFC title shot numerous times in his career, and his loss to Werdum at UFC 180 in 2014 was for the interim title. At 43 years old, Hunt shows no signs of fear or slowing down, and a win over Lewis could put him right back into title contention.
In his 11 fights in the UFC, Lewis has had just one go to a decision. In Hunt’s 14 UFC fights, only three have gone the distance. When these two hard-hitting heavyweights meet on Saturday in New Zealand, fans should expect a slug-fest. The fight going to the final bell? Unlikely.
Other fights on the UFC Fight Night main card include:
Middleweight fight: No. 8 Derek Brunson vs. No. 15 Daniel Kelly
Lightweight fight: Dan Hooker vs. Ross Pearson
Light Heavyweight fight: Ion Cutelaba vs. Henrique da Silva
Flyweight fight: No. 8 Tim Elliot vs. No. 12 Ben Nguyen
Featherweight fight: Alexander Volkanovski vs. Mizuto Hirota