Here is our second edition of "Buzzfeed," as we take a look at all the things you need to know about UFC Fight Night 30: "Machida vs. Munoz," which takes place this afternoon at Phones 4U Arena in Manchester, England.
No time to waste ... let's get right into it!
Who: Lyoto Machida vs. Mark Munoz
What: UFC Fight Night 30
When: Saturday, Oct. 26, 2013
Where: Phones 4U Arena in Manchester, England
Why it matters: Apart from the event comprising of fun and intriguing mixed martial arts (MMA) fights over important and incredibly relevant ones, all eyes will be on Lyoto Machida and Mark Munoz. And if they can make fight fans easily forget about Michael Bisping's absence after the brash Brit was forced off the card because of an eye injury, then it would be fair to call the re-worked main event a success.
-- Lyoto Machida will make his (full details here) Middleweight debut and that is always exciting since observers try to break down the unknown when it comes to a fighter finding a new home in a weight class. Not to knock on anyone else on this card, because they are all great athletes, but Machida is the biggest star on this FOX Sports 2-televised show.
-- The inability to predict how the co-main event between Melvin Guillard and Sunderland's own, Ross Pearson, will unfold. Both are talented boxers with a lack of thereof when the fight goes to the ground. Therefore, we should anticipate a good, old-fashioned brawl that will see one man stand above the other before the clock runs out.
-- For the English fans, Bisping's injury really hurt this card, and presumably hurt ticket sales, too. Bisping does not need to put on an exciting performance to wow his fans -- countrymen usually cheer on their hometown heroes through the thick and thin. They will, however, boo the living life out of Machida -- and Munoz -- if that fight is boring. All in all, Bisping's missed presence just hurts this card.
-- The quality of the card. Like we mentioned before, it is not a bad card and we will certainly tune in; however, to what extent can we be happy with the cards oversees? We were treated to some great free fight cards this year, so we are not complaining ... too much. English fans have been too patient and should be getting a huge card, hopefully sometime in the near future. At least there are five English fighters and seven Europeans one the card (not to mention Jimi Manuwa fighting out of England), who could salvage ticket sales or excitement for the home fans
-- Taking a look at all of the fresh faces we will see making their Octagon debuts, the one who sticks out the most is the first Scottish fighter ever to compete in UFC, Robert Whiteford, who battles Jim Hettes.
Original Card vs. Actual Card:
This is where it hurts.
-- As mentioned before, Bisping's injury was a huge blow to this card. Bisping is like what Georges St. Pierre is to Montreal, what Anthony Pettis is to Milwaukee, or what Jose Aldo and Anderson Silva are to Brazil -- cards tend to revolve around them more than the other fighters when each of those men fight on in their home countries. Machida was a sufficient replacement to step in and challenge former training partner, Munoz, though some are not too pleased with the absence of "The Count."
-- Another Brit, Tom Watson, was supposed to face Sakara on the main card, but was injured, too. Magnus Cedenblad then replaced him, yet he was injured as well and that is how we got Sakara vs. Musoke.
-- Anthony Njokuani was supposed to take on Paul Taylor, although the latter was forced to pull out due to injury and was replaced by Al Iaquinta. Njokuani then bowed out and Iaquinta now faces Piotr Hallman.
-- One week ago, Mike Wilkinson pulled out of a fight with Hettes and Whiteford now makes his debut against Hettes.
The original fights would have definitely been more exciting from what we are getting this Saturday, and even their replacement fights were better. However, like they say, nothing works in threes, and the third match ups that were made involving Sakara and Iaquinta are good, but not as good as the original plan.
How do the "Prelims" look?
Okay ... but still, not great.
The Online "Prelims," which can be seen either on Facebook or YouTube, feature the headliner between Al Iaquinta and Piotr Hallman, a middleweight matchup between Luke Barnatt and Andrew Craig, a featherweight scrap between Andy Ogle and Cole Miller, alongside Jimy Hettes and Robert Whiteford. Commencing the action will be Brad Scott against Michael Kuiper.
Interest Level: 6.5/10
Thank the heavens this fight is on a Saturday, and even more so, during the afternoon for us Westerners.
This is not the worst fight card ever assembled, although mounting injuries and a major European star really did a number on this card. Even with the addition of Machida, many fans have lost faith in the former Light Heavyweight champion being able to put on an exciting fight and if the main event is a stinker, let us hope the action that came prior was worth talking about.
There was not much press outside of the habitual MMA sites most diehard fans visit daily, and this event will be shown on FOX Sports 2, which could make a difference for those who do not have the channel. Habitual fans may not even know the most successful promotion in the world is putting on an event this weekend. And and if it were a Tuesday or Wednesday night, that could have skipped over a lot more casual fans.
Not a great card, but hey, it's free and we will tune in anyway. Like we mentioned before, fun fights over really important ones. It's kind of like a KISS album -- some really good tunes, with a boatload of fillers.
Be sure to check out our entire UFC Fight Night 30 event archive right here.
MMAmania.com will provide LIVE round-by-round, blow-by-blow coverage of the entire UFC Fight Night 30 card this Saturday (Oct. 26, 2013) right here, starting with the Facebook "Prelims" at 12:15 p.m. ET, right on through the FOX Sports 2-televised main card bouts at 3 p.m. ET.