After a short break, the UFC returns to action this weekend with a European-focused event that takes place in London, England.
At the top of the card is a main event matchup between two top contenders in the UFC heavyweight division, Fabricio Werdum and Alexander Volkov.
Fabricio Werdum vs. Alexander Volkov
Fabricio Werdum has been one of the more active heavyweight fighters on the UFC’s roster for a while now. After three fights in 2017, Werdum navigated his way to victory against Walt Harris and then Marcin Tybura not long after. The Harris fight was an interesting one, as it showcased just how brilliant Werdum can be – albeit against a low-ranked competitor who was filling in on short notice. The two victories helped Werdum bounce back to winning ways after he dropped a majority decision to Alistair Overeem at UFC 213. Without that loss on his record, it’s likely he would be challenging for the UFC Heavyweight Championship again already.
That’s the objective of Werdum as we head into this contest. However, the degree of difficulty is about as high as it gets when he steps into the UFC’s Octagon in London, England.
Alexander Volkov might just be one of the most unsuspecting challengers of the entire heavyweight division. He’s tall, smart, and extremely skilled, yet no one seems to be discussing Volkov as a real threat to Miocic’s title. With a win against Werdum, Volkov can extend his winning streak to six and kickstart his run to a title shot after moving to 4-0 in the UFC.
This is a significant test for both of these martial artists, and the prize is about as great as it gets.
Prediction: Alexander Volkov by KO/TKO
Jimi Manuwa vs. Jan Blachowicz
In the co-main event of the evening, light heavyweight Jimi Manuwa will battle with Jan Blachowicz.
Manuwa is an England fan-favorite and has won his last two appearances there. He made short work of Ovince Saint Preux and then Corey Anderson to move him closer to title contention, but his hopes were shattered when he was destroyed by Volkan Oezdemir in July last year.
That was the last we saw of Manuwa, and it remains to be seen how he will bounce back after suffering that tragic knockout loss in the first round.
He’ll be up against Jan Blachowicz, who is recently finding some superb form. For a while there, it looked as if Blachowicz didn’t belong in the UFC as he started with a 1-4 record in his first five fights. But now, he has recently picked up two consecutive wins over Devin Clark and Jared Cannonier. His submission victory against Clark in October was enough to be awarded a Performance of the Night award.
At the moment, these two are stuck in limbo. A win here will boost someone to a shot with a contender in the division, but the other will be forced to reclimb the standings.
Prediction: Jimi Manuwa by KO/TKO
Tom Duquesnoy vs. Terrion Ware
Tom Duquesnoy’s hype-train might have been derailed, but he is certainly still one of the best prospects to keep an eye on in the UFC today. He arrived in a big way when he defeated Patrick Williams in April last year but then dropped a split decision to the durable Cody Stamann in his next outing.
He’ll be up against Terrion Ware, who has lost his first two fights in the UFC so far. Ware first battled Stamann and lost a unanimous decision, before also stepping in with “Sugar” Sean O’Malley and losing yet again. It certainly hasn’t been the best of starts for Ware, who will look to turn things around against Duquesnoy.
Prediction: Tom Duquesnoy by KO/TKO
Leon Edwards vs. Peter Sobotta
Leon Edwards four-fight winning streak will be on the line as he faces Peter Sobotta this weekend.
Since losing to Kamaru Usman in December 2015, Edwards has since won all four of his contests. Most recently he outworked Bryan Barberena, but has previously scored a win over Albert Tumenov. At the age of 26, Edwards certainly has time on his side and will be looking to jump past Sobotta and earn a ranked opponent for his next matchup.
Peter Sobotta is up there with some of the least talked about athletes in the UFC. With a mixture of the European effect, and a little to do with him being a generally quiet competitor, Sobotta hasn’t attracted much attention through his five fights in the UFC. With wins coming from four of these contests, and a loss to Kyle Noke at UFC 193, Sobotta hopes to storm past Edwards.
Prediction: Leon Edwards by decision
UFC Fight Night 127 fight card
UFC Fight Night 127 begins on UFC Fight Pass from 1:45 pm ET (6:45 pm GMT) on Saturday, March 17.
UFC Fight Pass (5:00 pm ET / 10:00 pm GMT)
- Fabricio Werdum [-185] vs. Alexander Volkov [+190]
- Jimi Manuwa [-196] vs. Jan Blachowicz [+185]
- Tom Duquesnoy [-260] vs. Terrion Ware [+244]
- Leon Edwards [-190] Peter Sobotta [+170]
UFC Fight Pass Prelims
UFC Fight Pass (1:45 pm ET / 6:45 pm GMT)
- John Phillips vs. Charles Byrd
- Danny Roberts vs. Oliver Enkamp
- Jack Marshman vs. Brad Scott
- Danny Henry vs. Hakeem Dawodu
- Paul Craig vs. Magomed Ankalaev
- Mark Godbeer vs. Dmitriy Sosnovskiy
- Nad Narimani vs. Nasrat Haqparast
- Kajan Johnson vs. Stevie Ray