While UFC Vegas 27 will not be as star-studded as UFC 262, it will feature some key fights that may decide title matchups in the bantamweight and women’s strawweight divisions.
UFC Vegas 27 could be a mixed bag with some exciting fights and a couple of duds, much like every other card. Let’s take a look at which bouts are likely to be a barn-burner and which are most likely to fail.
Ricardo Ramos vs Bill Algeo
The preliminary card of UFC Vegas 27 will feature featherweights Ricardo Ramos and Bill Algeo. The fight has the potential to be an under-the-radar contender for Fight of the Night.
Ramos was 4-1 at bantamweight before moving up to 145 pounds and winning his first two fights. However, at his most recent appearance at UFC Fight Island 1, the Brazilian was defeated by Lerone Murphy by TKO. With this fight, the 25-year-old will strive to get back in the win column.
Since 2019, Algeo has alternated between wins and defeats. The 31-year-old will look to make it two wins in a row after a unanimous decision victory over Spike Carlyle.
Court McGee vs Claudio Silva
Former TUF (The Ultimate Fighter) champion Court McGee would square off against Claudio Silva in an octagon rematch.
McGee has been on a bad run and is now on his longest losing streak of his career. He was defeated by Diego Lima, Sean Brady, and Carlos Condit in a row.
Silva had a good start in the UFC, going 5-0 over the course of five years. He has also defeated prominent opponents such as Leon Edwards and Nordine Taleb. His first defeat came at the hands of James Krause at UFC Fight Night 180.
McGee’s health has deteriorated steadily over the years. His unyielding mentality will no longer compensate for his lack of physicality, which may be a major factor in his battle with Silva. It’s quite likely that ‘The Crusher’ will lose for the fourth time in a row in a one-sided match.
Yan Xiaonan vs Carla Esparza
Rose Namajunas won the UFC women’s strawweight title at UFC 261. If Weili Zhang isn’t given a rematch right away, the winner of Yan Xiaonan vs Carla Esparza may be ‘Thug’ Rose’s first opponent.
Since joining UFC, Xiaonan has been nothing short of dominant. She’s unbeaten in the octagon, having won six consecutive fights via unanimous decision. After nearly four years in the promotion, the Chinese fighter is yet to win a single stoppage.
Meanwhile, Esparza is riding high after winning four straight fights, including notable victories over Michelle Waterson and Marina Rodriguez. ‘Cookie Monster’ has won both of her most recent fights by near split decisions.
If they challenge Namajunas for the title, Xiaonan and Esparza will both have intriguing storylines to tell. Esparza defeated Rose in the UFC for the first time years ago. Meanwhile, Xiaonan will seek vengeance for her compatriot and return the strawweight championship to China.
Ben Rothwell vs Chris Barnett
After his fight with Philipe Lins fell through, Ben Rothwell will make his first octagon appearance of 2021 at UFC Vegas 27. Rothwell is a real veteran with 50 MMA fights under his belt. He has been with UFC since 2009.
Chris Barnett, who has made a name for himself on the regional circuit, will make his octagon debut against the 39-year-old. Barnett is on a six-fight winning streak, with four of those wins coming by knockout.
The battle can go in two ways because both combatants are massive warriors with knockout strength. The heavyweight bout could go the distance in a 15-minute, fatigue-inducing slow grind or end in a knockout.
Rob Font vs Cody Garbrandt
Rob Font and Cody Garbrandt, two bantamweight spitfires, are set to collide in the main event of UFC Vegas 27. Font and Garbrandt are expected to head straight at each other aiming for a kill shot. Fans can surely expect fireworks in this bout.
As champion Aljamain Sterling recovers from neck surgery, the UFC bantamweight championship picture is in jeopardy. As Sterling returns, he’ll face former champion Petr Yan in a rematch for the title. After the Russian was disqualified for an improper knee, their first fight ended in controversy.
Nonetheless, the stakes for this battle between graded bantamweights Font and Garbrandt are high. The winner will almost certainly face the winner of Sterling vs Yan. If Sterling is out for even longer than anticipated, an interim title clash between Yan and the winner of UFC Vegas 27’s main event may be on the cards.
Which match are you looking forward to? Do let us know in the comment section below!