UFC 200
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By In Mixed Martial Arts

The Time Warp that was UFC 200

“It was supposed to be a night for the ages.

Few left UFC 200 thinking it lived up to the hype, but that’s to be expected; when you build up an event as the best thing ever, there’s very little room for error, since it has to be better than, well, everything else before it. The headlining fight falling apart just days prior to the event is too big of a hiccup to qualify any event as the best ever, but even in spite of Jon Jones’ United States Anti-Doping Agency scandal, UFC 200 was still a night for the ages. Actually, it might be more accurate to say it was a night of the ages. Indeed, UFC 200 was a strange time-warp of an event.

The entire night had one foot in the past. The presence of Brock Lesnar immediately evoked feelings of the age-old kissing cousins relationship between MMA and professional wrestling. The carnival-esque slant for entertainment and spectacle truly makes MMA unique in the world of professional sports, a realm that otherwise holds competition as its sole guiding virtue. Both the Lesnar-Mark Hunt fight and the Daniel Cormier-Anderson Silva fight were clear homages to the undergirding principle that an exciting fight is often better than a competitive one — or in the case of Cormier-Silva, that any fight is better than no fight…”
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By In Mixed Martial Arts

UFC 200 Statistical Matchup Analysis – Jon Jones vs. Daniel Cormier

“Of all the big fights coming up this weekend, this one deserves to be the main event’s main event.

Jon Jones and Daniel Cormier have been the centerpieces of the Ultimate Fighting Championship’s light heavyweight division for the past two years. They were originally slated to fight at UFC 178 in September 2014, but an injury to incumbent champion Jones postponed it to UFC 182 four months later. By then, Jones had already strung together a record-setting seven light heavyweight title defenses, while Cormier was 2-0 at 205 pounds. “Bones” took a clear though at times competitive decision win over Cormier before the UFC stripped him of his title for outside-of-the-cage shenanigans. After a lengthy time away, Jones made his comeback in April, when he coasted through Ovince St. Preux for the interim light heavyweight title. This will be the first time since 2013 that Jones fights more than once in a year.

On the other side of the cage at UFC 200 on Saturday in Las Vegas will be the former Strikeforce heavyweight grand prix champion and current UFC light heavyweight champion, though the latter accolade was only available once Jones was out of the picture. Since losing to Jones, Cormier has won two straight, choking out Anthony Johnson for the title and defending it in a razor-close decision against Alexander Gustafsson. Cormier has solidified his spot as the best 205-pounder in Jones’ absence, but that absence has always loomed over his championship claims, making this a high-stakes fight for his legacy in the promotion and the sport. Since joining the UFC, Cormier has fought at least twice every year, but this will be his first fight of 2016.

There is a lot to unpack in this fight, both from narrative and statistical perspectives. Let us see how the Tale of the Tape can shed some light on the matchup…”


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