The UFC opens up its 2021 PPV schedule with UFC 257: Poirier vs. McGregor 2.
On Saturday January, 23, McGregor will headline the PPV, just as he did to start 2020. The main card will also feature the UFC debut of Michael Chandler as he takes on Dan Hooker in the co-main event. As always, we will feature the fights that should keep viewers interested before the PPV.
Here is your Guide to the Prelims for UFC 257:
Umar Nurmagomedov vs. Sergey Morozov (Bantamweight)
Umar Nurmagomedov should sound familiar to most fight fans. His relation to Khabib, and his undefeated record come with a lot of hype and high expectations in PFL. Umar was supposed to make his debut in 2020, but all 3 scheduled fights fell through. The same hype will follow him now into 2021 as Umar will hope to make his long awaited UFC debut.
Sergey Morozov will also make is UFC debut, after their first scheduled fight fell through. A fight that Morozov accepted, which was only 5 days after a unanimous decision win.
Ottman Azaitar vs. Matt Frevola (Lightweight)
Ottoman Azaitar finishes fights. And he finishes them quickly, usually within the first round. Azaitar has devastating power in both his punches and his kicks. His opponents find themselves on the defensive from the start. He has definitely earned his nickname “Bulldozer”.
His opponent, Matt Frevola, has also earned his nickname “Steamrolla”. Frevola had 3 fights cancelled in 2020, and hopes to have better luck with fights in 2021. This Contender Series veteran is starting to find his rhythm in the UFC and hopes to keep building momentum with a third win in a row.
Sara McMann #9 vs. Julianna Peña #7 (Bantamweight)
Sara McMann returned to the UFC in 2020 after a two-year layoff, although she was staying busy with grappling bouts during that time. McMann is a MMA veteran at 40 years old, and has been in the UFC since 2013. Julianna Peña was on TUF at the same time, both of these women have earned the respect of MMA fans for their longevity.
Being at the top of the division, and having both fighters currently ranked in the top 10, maks this fight even more exciting. Who stays at the top? This fight is currently set to open up the night, and what a way to start the fight card.
Andrew Sanchez vs. Makhmud Muradov (Middleweight)
Andrew Sanchez won his last fight with a fantastic KO. The TUF veteran has fought elite talent, and should be knocking on the door of the top 15 by the end of 2021, if all goes well. Sanchez has already had an opponent change for this fight, as Muradov steps in to replace André Muniz.
Makhmud Muradov had 3 fights fall through in 2020, but the KO artist will aim to reintroduce himself to the octagon in 2021. This could be a battle of two sluggers that like to stand and throw leather.