01-03-15. By JP Scarano, Exclusively for TheFightWorld.Com
Hello fight fans and Happy New Year to all of you! I hope you all had a great holiday and were safe and didn’t drink and drive. This is the first weekend for MMA and fighting for all of us fight fans. UFC 182 takes place tonight at 10 PM ET and 7 PM PT. Here, we will watch the contest for the UFC World Light Heavyweight Championship. This is a main event that everyone in the fight world has been eagerly waiting for next to Manny Pacquiao vs. Floyd Mayweather. The UFC also has 3 awesome events coming up this month and tonight is just the start of that.
UFC 182 is this weekend, January 3, 2015, at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada. This isn’t just about the UFC World Light Heavyweight Championship but more about a nasty rivalry that has been getting worse and worse. They should have named this PPV event “Bad Blood” instead of “Bitter Rivals” because of what is going to happen in this fight. This card is amazing as the co-main event is becoming just as contentious as the main event.
In the co-main event we see two lightweights battling it out to show who is going to move up in the ranks and send someone else down hard. We have undefeated Myles Jury taking on Donald Cerrone. Jury is 15-0 and was part of TUF 15 and looked good but lost in his first match to continue on the show but the UFC saw something in him and gave Jury his shot and he took it. He has been on a tear ever since.
Cerrone is a WEC/UFC vet and has been the one guy who everyone pretty much has to take on due to his record of 25–6 (1) and with a 5-fight winning streak. He is looking to be the next guy to get a title shot at the UFC World Lightweight Championship. This fight was created when Jury beat Cerrone’s teammate and friend, Diego Sanchez’ back in March 15, 2014. It was what Jury said after the fight that made Cerrone want to fight him even more. Jury said about Sanchez that “I didn’t expect to beat him that easy.” That was Jury’s first mistake. If it was so easy why didn’t he finish Sanchez and just take the Unaminmous Decision ?
When Cerrone heard Jury’s comment he told Dana White that he wanted Jury for his first fight of 2015. If someone asks to fight you because of your comments about them then you might want to change how you come across. But, I guess, when you are undefeated you want to make a splash and a name for yourself. This is shaping up to be a hotly contested fight. And that is good for all of fight fans!
In the main event of the evening the defending UFC World Light Heavyweight Champion Jon Jones will be taking on undefeated contender Daniel Cormier. These two men have been bitter rivals for a while now and have been pretty much since Cormier became a Light Heavyweight . Let’s start where it all began and really look at these two fighters and how this feud began. I am going to start with the challenger first.
Cormier is a wrestling machine and went to the Olympics twice at the beginning of his MMA career as a Heavyweight. He became the Heavyweight champion in the King of the Cage promotion which got him noticed by Strikeforce who signed him to the promotion. Cormier was an alternate for the Strikeforce World Grand Prix Heavyweight Tournament and got the chance to fight in the tournament when Alistair Overeem got released and went to the UFC. Cormier shocked us all when he won the Strikeforce World Grand Prix and also, when the UFC bought Strikeforce, they took Cormier into the UFC. Once there, he started showing why we call Cormier the “King of the Grind” with his smothering, tough wrestling technique. After his close friend and training partner, Cain Velazquez, won the UFC World Heavyweight Championship, Cormier made the move to light-heavyweight division. Everyone, including myself, has always said that was where he should have been all along. Since moving down, Cormier has been on a tear and is looking like the toughest contender for the title.
When the #1 contender, Alexander Gustafsson, got hurt before his rematch with Jones at UFC 178, Cormier got the call to fight for the title. Naturally, he jumped at the chance. When the injury bug got Jones, Cormier had to wait until the champion healed enough to return. But before all of that happened, Jones and Cormier had their pre-fight press day at the MGM Grand. They did the stare-down and they both got into each others faces. Cormier pushed Jones and then Jones came back and they got into a nasty scrap. That’s when they really started to hate each other. Since then, Cormier got the full time job on UFC Tonight and became the team captain at American Kickboxing Academy where he is a coach. Cormier is 35 years old and he knows his opportunity for title shots aren’t going to be coming often and knows that a win is a must for him tonight.
Now it’s time to talk about a champion who is considered undefeated as well but actually has a record of 20-1. That one loss came at a DQ when Jones used an illegal elbow to his opponent. Since his entry into the UFC, Jones has been demonstrating how talented he is and that he keeps improving as a fighter. Jones believes in Bruce Lee’s saying, “Be like water”, which means going with the flow and always getting better.
Since his first loss Jones has plowed through fighters and demonstrated why is was one of the top fighters in the Light Heavyweight division. When Jones’ former teammate, Rashad Evans, was training for his title shot, he got hurt . The UFC made Jones the number one contender, as a result, to take on former champion Shogun Rua. Everyone thought that Rua was going to beat Jones quickly and keep the title. Jones had other plans and he took the title from Rua and became the youngest champion in UFC history. He has been on a tear ever since then. He has beaten 4 former champions and 3 top contenders and he keeps getting better and better.
Yes, people say that Jones is cocky and a show off, but when it comes time to fight he always brings his A-game. With this fight, he feels this is a must win situation for him. Jones has broken the most defending-champion record in the UFC Light Heavyweight division which sat at 5 defenses. That record was held by Tito Ortiz. Currently, Jones is looking to keep the record going with 8 title defenses.
Cormier and Jones have had beef for a while now and Jones has a fire in him that we haven’t seen in a while from the champion. I think Cormier may have unwittingly awoken a sleeping dragon in Jones.
Both these fighters have something to prove and I think we will see it this Saturday night. Don’t forget to watch the prelims on Foxs Sports 1. I want to hear from you fans; who are you going for Team Jones or Team DC?
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Related Link: UFC 182 JONES VS. CORMIER