UFC Fight Night: Dos Santos vs. Ivanov Preview
A preview of Saturday’s UFC Fight Night card, set to take place in Boise, Idaho.
Updated: July 12, 2018 • 6:40 AM ET
Junior Dos Santos is attempting to prove he's still a contender in the UFC's heavyweight division.
Following a crazy night of fights at UFC 226 last weekend, the UFC isn’t slowing down, as they’ll storm into Boise, Idaho this weekend and feature a dynamic heavyweight fight as the main event. Former champion and No. 7 ranked heavyweight Junior Dos Santos will take on dangerous UFC newcomer Blagoy Ivanov of Bulgaria.
Dos Santos will attempt to rebound from his title loss to Stipe Miocic at UFC 211 last May with a win over a fighter that has question marks. Dos Santos is 2-3 in his last five fights, but he’s still one of the most dangerous fighters in the heavyweight division.
The 34-year-old Dos Santos has defeated key fighters such as Cain Velasquez, Miocic, Ben Rothwell, Mark Hunt, Frank Mir, Shane Carwin, Roy Nelson, Mirko Cro Cop and Fabricio Werdum, not to mention a win over Miocic prior to their 2017 rematch. The Brazilian is 12-4 in the UFC, 18-5 overall and one of the most successful heavyweights in the promotion’s history.
Ivanov will make his UFC debut on Saturday with a considerable amount of hype and an interesting story. He’s a former Bellator fighter and WSOF heavyweight champ, who defended his title five times and was the runner-up in the Bellator Season 10 Heavyweight Tournament, losing to Alexander Volkov, who is now the No. 5 ranked heavyweight in the UFC.
Ivanov nearly lost his life after being stabbed in a bar fight in 2012 and missed 21 months of MMA competition before returning to Bellator in 2013. The only loss of his career was to Volkov, but Dos Santos will represent the biggest challenge of his career. With a victory on Saturday, Ivanov will likely launch himself into the top 10 of a division that has had significant changes in the past year.
Saturday’s co-main event will be a welterweight fight between prospect Sage Northcutt and Zak Ottow.
After being discovered by UFC President Dana White during his “Lookin’ for a Fight” web series, the 22-year-old Northcutt burst into the UFC with lofty expectations at just 19 years old. He started strong, winning his first two fights by finish, but then lost two of his next three bouts, being submitted twice.
Northcutt is 5-2 in the UFC and riding a two-fight winning streak, most recently defeating Thibault Gouti by unanimous decision in February. The Texas native is likely one win away from taking a step up in competition and proving he’s worth all the hype.
Ottow is 3-2 in the UFC and most recently defeated Mike Pyle by first-round TKO in March. He has a tough task ahead of him against Northcutt, but could certainly make a name for himself by putting a dent in the youngster’s hype train.
Also on the main card
Featherweight fight - Dennis Bermudez vs. Rick Glenn
Welterweight fight - Randy Brown vs. Niko Price
Featherweight fight - No. 12 Myles Jury vs. Chad Mendes
Women’s bantamweight fight - No. 6 Cat Zingano vs. No. 7 Marion Reneau
Bantamweight fight - No. 15 Eddie Wineland vs. No. 13 Alejandro Perez
Featherweight fight - No. 10 Darren Elkins vs. Alexander Volkanovski
Flyweight fight - Justin Scoggins vs. Said Nurmagomedov
Featherweight fight - Kurt Holobaugh vs. Raoni Barcelos
UFC Fight Pass Early Prelims
Women’s flyweight fight - No. 7 Liz Carmouche vs. Jennifer Maia
Flyweight fight - Mark De La Rosa vs. Elias Garcia
Strawweight fight - Jessica Aguilar vs. Jodie Esquibel
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