It's time for another edition of BUZZFEED! to break down UFC 174: "Johnson vs. Bagautinov," which takes place TONIGHT (Sat., June 14, 2014) from Rogers Arena in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.
Here is everything you need to know about the mixed martial arts (MMA) event that takes place later this evening.
Without further ado, let's get to it.
Who: Demetrious Johnson vs. Ali Bagautinov
What: UFC 174
When: Saturday, June 14, 2014
Where: Rogers Arena in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
Why It Matters: After successfully defending the flyweight strap three times on FOX, Demetrious Johnson will be put to the test by headlining a pay-per-view (PPV) event. The tickets and PPV sales won't be his sole responsibility, however, fight cards usually revolve around the main event.
Also, we'll find out if Rory MacDonald or Tyron Woodley have the goods to challenge for the welterweight title if either is victorious.
What's Hot: Apart from the promotion returning to Canada, the two headlining fights should be a lot of fun. Mix that in with the return of Andrei Arlovski and another light heavyweight bout destined to be finished before the end of the third round, this should be a decent evening of violence.
What's Not: This card may not have gotten proper promotion, despite these fresh UFC "Embedded" videos we've been getting. Some feel the main event is sour, although what is a little more problematic is Bagautinov's two-year ban from the International Sambo Federation for a positive drug test back in November 2012.
Should we be caring a little more about that?
Also, UFC was bumped from FOX Sports 1 (FS1) and FOX Sports 2 (FS2) because of prior programming commitments, which were NASCAR and 24 Hours of Le Mans racing. The "Prelims" will be shown on FX instead.
Not quite the biggest sport in the world just yet.
New Blood: We've got five Octagon debutants on this fight card tonight.
Kajan Johnson has been a longtime veteran of the sport, having competed in King of The Cage (KOTC), MFC, and TKO, to name a few. He recently appeared as a cast member on The Ultimate Fighter (TUF): "Nations," making it all the way to the semifinals in the welterweight bracket. He makes his promotional debut after suffering just one loss in his past eight professional contests.
Valerie Letourneau has competed for TKO and Ringside MMA in her native Quebec, mustering up a record of 5-3. She appeared on TUF 18, losing to Roxanne Modaferri and failed to get into the house. She's lost to notables such as Sarah Kaufman, Alexis Davis and Claudia Gadelha.
Her opponent Elizabeth Phillips also makes her debut, coming into her scrap with a four-fight winning streak. She's only gone to a decision once, and fights out of Spokane, Washington's Sikjitsu camp alongside TUF 18 women's bantamweight winner Julianna Pena.
Canadian prospect Jason Saggo is currently 9-1 in the sport, winning every fight by way of stoppage. He's submitted eight opponents, using the rear naked choke five times.
He faces lightweight Josh Shockley, who's a four-time Bellator veteran. The Indiana resident is coming off a win over Micah Miller, but hasn't fought in a year. His Bellator run stands at 2-2, including a victory over former UFC fighter Shamar Bailey.
Original Card vs. Actual Card: This card didn't take too much of a beating, as the only injuries suffered revolve around Letourneau vs. Phillips.
Germaine de Randamie was supposed to duke it out against Milana Dudiev, but after visa issues halted the Dutchwoman's plans, Letourneau was put in her place. Dudiev then suffered an injury, and was replaced by Phillips.
How The "Prelims" Look: Usually, this piece tries to give every undercard the benefit of the doubt, because quite frankly, true fight fans know their stuff about respective preliminary fighters.
Having said that, this installment of the "Prelims" isn't exactly mouthwatering.
You've got Johnson vs. Tae Hyun Bang opening up the FX broadcast, which includes Letourneau against Phillips, too. Daniel Sarafian vs. Kiichi Kunimoto headlines the "Prelims," which should be a decent affair. Round that up with Yves Jabouin vs. Mike Easton at bantamweight, and the FX card is could be a good excuse to leave the dinner table and hit the couch, or to stay at the restaurant a little longer before the main card.
Saggo against Shockley opens up the Fight Pass broadcast, and following that bout is Roland Delorme vs. Michinori Tanaka.
Who Needs A Win Badly: All eyes will be on Andrei Arlovski, who needs to convince the observers he can still hack it in the Octagon after competing inside the UFC cage for the first time since 2008.
Mike Easton hasn't won in his past three fights, and despite being a tough opponent for anyone, he's not going to be around any longer if he fails to beat Jabouin. "Tiger" on the other hand is 1-2 in his last three contests. The same goes for Sarafian.
Both Rafael Cavalcante and Roland Delorme have 1-1 and 1 "No Contest" records in their last three Octagon appearances, so they need to get the win tonight, too.
Interest Level: 7/10
Like an album review that gets decimal points because of a well-placed saxophone solo or a great closing track, this card gets a flat seven because this is the type of main card we should expect for our hard-earned money. The main card should be worth tuning in, but the card as a whole is a little weak, considering western Canada has gotten some stinkers in recent memory.
Here is the full UFC 174: "Johnson vs. Bagautinov" fight card:
PPV Main Card (10 p.m. ET):
170 lbs.: Rory MacDonald vs. Tyron Woodley
205 lbs.: Ryan Bader vs. Rafael Cavalcante
265 lbs.: Andrei Arlovski vs. Brendan Schaub
205 lbs.: Ryan Jimmo vs. Ovince St. Preux
FX "Prelims" Card (8 p.m. ET):
170 lbs.: Kiichi Kunimoto vs. Daniel Sarafian
135 lbs.: Valerie Letourneau vs. Elizabeth Phillips
135 lbs.: Mike Easton vs. Yves Jabouin
155 lbs.: Kajan Johnson vs. Tae Hyun Bang
Fight Pass "Prelims" Card (7 p.m. ET):
135 lbs.: Roland Delorme vs. Michinori Tanaka
155 lbs.: Jason Saggo vs. Josh Shockley
MMAmania.com will provide LIVE round-by-round, blow-by-blow coverage of the entire UFC 174 fight card below, starting with the Fight Pass "Prelims" matches online, which are scheduled to begin at 7 p.m. ET, right on through the FX-televised under card bouts at 8 p.m. ET and then main card PPV, which is slated to begin at 10 p.m. ET.
Enjoy the fights!