While the dynamic of UFC 196 has changed drastically over the last few weeks with the withdrawal of Rafael dos Anjos, the event still promises to deliver truckloads of drama, action, entertainment and controversy.
Its identity has simply changed, rather than been lost. This is still going to be epic.
The ferocious evening of fighting will take place at the chic MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada. A fitting location for a night of this stature.
A men’s Welterweight division battle between Conor McGregor and Nate Diaz is the headline event of UFC 196. If this was ever not a grudge match, it certainly became one when McGregor labeled Diaz a fake gangster and Diaz retorted by accusing McGregor of doping. On a technical MMA level, it will be fascinating to see how the Notorious copes at 170 lbs in his Welterweight debut. If he passes this test, he might well live up to his word and run through the whole roster. While there might not be a belt at stake here, there certainly is a fair bit of everything else!
A women’s Bantamweight Championship bout between Holly Holm and Miesha Tate will co-headline UFC 196. Not only will the victor claim a title but they will also earn five rounds in the octagon with Ronda Rousey who’s massive commercial profile creates the opportunity for big sums of money to be made by her opponents.
In addition to the above, the day will be littered with other epic match-ups.
One that really catches the eye is a Light Heavyweight clash between Corey Anderson and Tom Lawlor, a pairing of up-and-comer against the veteran. Anderson has won four of his last five fights, doing well against an increasing level of competition and he appears to be preparing for a shot at glory in the division in the near future. While Lawlor, at the age of 32, will be looking to create a few fireworks of his own before calling it quits. There are plots and sub-plots everywhere!
The official fight card can be seen below:
Welterweight: Conor McGregor vs Nate Diaz
Women’s bantamweight: Holly Holm vs Miesha Tate
Light heavyweight: Gian Villante vs Ilir Latifi
Light heavyweight: Corey Anderson vs Tom Lawlor
Women’s bantamweight: Amanda Nunes vs Valentina Shevchenko
Welterweight: Brandon Thatch vs Siyar Bahadurzada
Welterweight: Erick Silva vs Nordine Taleb
Middleweight: Vitor Miranda vs Marcelo Guimaraes
Featherweight: Darren Elkins vs Chas Skelly
Lightweight: Diego Sanchez vs Jim Miller
Lightweight: Justin Salas vs Jason Saggo
Featherweight: Julian Erosa vs Teruto Ishihara
The event will be shown on FOX Sports on Sunday in Cambodia (10am), Hong Kong (11am), Indonesia (11am), Macao (11am), Mongolia (11am), Myanmar (9:30am), Papua New Guinea (13:30pm), Singapore (11am), Thailand (10am) and Vietnam (10am). Coverage will open with the Main Card.
*None of the Preliminary Card matches will be televised.