This Saturday brings a packed evening of mixed martial arts fights with both Bellator MMA and the Ultimate Fighting Championship in action. Our focus on this day is on the latter.
The UFC sets up shop this weekend in Raleigh, NC inside PNC Arena for Saturday night’s UFC on ESPN+ 24, which streams in its entirety on the subscription-based video platform.
In total, UFC on ESPN+ 24 will feature 12 MMA fights. Prelim action begins Saturday at 5 p.m. EST, 2 p.m. PST, with the five-fight main card immediately following at 8 p.m. EST, 5 p.m. PST. As is customary, ESPN+ will provide both English and Spanish feeds for this UFC Fight Night.
Highlighting the night’s proceedings is a five-round non-title main event in the UFC’s Heavyweight division featuring two of its top contenders. No. 3 contender Curtis Blaydes (11-2, one no-contest) will fight No. 4 contender Junior dos Santos (21-5) in the headliner this Saturday night.
Heading into Saturday night’s main attraction, both contestants are level in height at 6-foot-4.
Curtis Blaydes has posted a 4-1 record in his last five fights and enters this main event having won two fights in a row. Most recently, he defeated Shamil Abdurakhimov (second-round knockout) in UFC 242 on ESPN+ pay-per-view back in September.
In the other corner, dos Santos has posted a 4-1 mark in his last five fights, looking to avenge his loss to Francis Ngannou back in June in this weekend’s main event.
The Tale of the Tape
UFC.com shows that Curtis Blaydes has a three-inch reach advantage (80 inches to 77 inches) and a five-inch leg reach advantage (46 inches to 41 inches) heading into the main event.
Prediction: Curtis Blaydes by third-round knockout.
Four other fights make up Saturday night’s main card
No. 5 contender Rafael dos Anjos (29-11) vs. Michael Chiesa (15-4) [Welterweight, co-main event]
No. 10 contender Jordan Espinosa (14-5) vs. No. 11 contender Alex Perez (22-5) [Flyweight]
Hannah Cifers (9-3) vs. Angela Hill (10-7) [Strawweight]
Jamahal Hill (6-0, UFC debut) vs. Darko Stosic (13-2) [Light Heavyweight]
UFC on ESPN+ 24 at a Glance
Prelims: 5 p.m. EST, 2 p.m. PST, ESPN+
Main Card: 8 p.m. EST, 5 p.m. PST, ESPN+
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