Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) heads to Canada for a special Sunday (Aug. 23, 2015) edition of UFC Fight Night 74: "Holloway vs. Oliveira," live on FOX Sports 1 from the SaskTel Centre in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan.
Catch all the action LIVE with a main card start time of 9 p.m ET (for up-to-date UFC Fight Night 74 results click here).
Below is everything you need to know to stay on top of the Fight Night event in Saskatoon.
Who: Max Holloway vs. Charles Oliveira
What: UFC Fight Night 74
When: Sun., August 23, 2015, beginning at 6 p.m. ET on UFC Fight Pass
Where: SaskTel Centre in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada
How To Watch: FOX Sports 1 main card at 9 p.m. ET; FOX Sports 1 "Prelims" under card at 7 p.m. ET; UFC Fight Pass "Prelims" at 6 p.m. ET.
Live UFC Fight Night 74 results: Play-by-play coverage stream right here
Why It Matters: Even though the only consequential bout of the evening is the Featherweight main event, several prospects will showcase their talents in Saskatoon tonight, making for an intriguing card overall. With Georges St-Pierre no longer in the fold, upstart Canadians Chad Laprise and Olivier Aubin-Mercier will look to continue their march up the Lightweight ladder, proudly carrying their nation's flag with them. Considering how important the Canadian mixed martial arts (MMA) fanbase has been over the last several years, UFC brass is undoubtedly hoping both Laprise and Mercier become the next generation of Canadian MMA superstars.
What's Hot: While UFC Fight Night 74 may not be the most stacked card of 2015, the Saskatoon main event will feature two of the most exciting fighters on the entirety of UFC's roster. Max Holloway and Charles Oliveira have won a combined 10 fights in a row -- notching 8 finishes in the process -- so you can expect fireworks this evening.
What's Not: While hardcore MMA fans are well aware of the many exciting talents throwing down tonight on FOX Sports 1, the casual MMA fan will likely have never heard of the majority of the fighters set to battle at UFC Fight Night 74. The issue with that of course, is the fact fans may end up skipping out on this card, and potentially miss a "Fight of the Year" contender between Holloway and Oliveira.
Original Card vs Actual Card:
There were a few minor changes to UFC Fight Night 74, but certainly nothing that crippled the Saskatoon MMA event.
The latest change occurred only last week, when Neil Magny stepped up on just about 10 days notice to replace Rick Story against Erick Silva in tonight's co-main event. What makes the switch even more compelling is the fact Magny just recently had his seven fight win streak snapped by Demian Maia at UFC 190 on August 1st.
Chris Wade was slated to face off against Olivier Aubin-Mercier tonight, but an injury to Wade saw Tony Sims step up on short notice for the second straight fight.
Heavy handed Light Heavyweight Sean O'Connell was set to welcome UFC debutant Misha Cirkunov at UFC Fight Night 74, but when O'Connell pulled out of the fight earlier in August, UFC newcomer Daniel Jolly got his opportunity to step up on short notice.
Misha Cirkunov (vs. Daniel Jolly): The 28-year old Latvian will make his UFC debut following a four fight winning streak that saw him capture the Hard Knocks Fighting Championship Light Heavyweight crown by knocking out UFC veteran Rodney Wallace in January. Cirkunov is 9-2, boasting seven career finishes.
Daniel Jolly (vs. Misha Cirkunov): Making his UFC debut on just over 10 days notice, the undefeated 5-0 Jolly will look to continue his winning ways against fellow newcomer Misha Cirkunov. Jolly has fought sparingly in his career, fighting only five times in four years.
How The "Prelims" Look: You will definitely see better "Prelims" cards in the future.
With that being said, I am intrigued to watch Cirkunov's debut, Elias Silverio's return, and the Light Heavyweight bout pitting Marcos Rogério de Lima against Nikita Krylov.
If you missed out on the "Prelims" tonight, it certainly wouldn't be a travesty by any stretch.
Who Needs A Win Badly: This portion is reserved for fighters who could be fighting for their jobs today, rather than contenders or title challengers needing victory. Let's take a look at those who need to pull it together:
Sam Stout (vs. Frankie Perez): It will be extremely tough for UFC brass to cut Sam Stout win or lose this evening, considering "Hands of Stone" has been a consummate professional in his 16-fight UFC career. Unfortunately for the Canadian, he has been viciously knocked out in two straight fights, and may be urged to retire following another loss in Saskatoon.
Interest Level: 6/10
This may not be the best fight night event of the year, but the main event alone could make this a night to remember. Max Holloway and Charles Oliveira always put on stellar shows, and you have to believe they will deliver on the grandest stage of their respective careers tonight.
As for the rest of the event, there is a major lack of consequential bouts, but hopefully that will be made up by several exciting fights and jaw-dropping finishes.
One can only hope!
Check out the full UFC Fight Night 74 card right here:
145 lbs.: Max Holloway vs. Charles Oliveira
170 lbs.: Erick Silva vs. Neil Magny
FOX Sports 1 Main Card (9 p.m. ET):
170 lbs.: Josh Burkman vs. Patrick Cote
155 lbs.: Chad Laprise vs. Francisco Trinaldo
155 lbs.: Olivier Aubin-Mercier vs. Tony Sims
115 lbs.: Valerie Letourneau vs. Maryna Moroz
FOX Sports 1 "Prelims" (7 p.m. ET):
155 lbs.: Frankie Perez vs. Sam Stout
135 lbs.: Felipe Arantes vs. Yves Jabouin
205 lbs.: Nikita Krylov vs. Marcos Rogerio de Lima
125 lbs.: Chris Beal vs. Chris Kelades
UFC Fight Pass "Prelims" (6 p.m. ET):
155 lbs.: Shane Campbell vs. Elias Silverio
205 lbs.: Misha Cirkunov vs. Daniel Jolly
MMAmania.com will provide LIVE round-by-round, blow-by-blow coverage of the entire UFC Fight Night 74 card on fight night (Sun., Aug. 23, 2015), starting with the Fight Pass "Prelims", which are scheduled to begin at 6 p.m. ET, followed by the Fox Sports 1 prelims at 7 p.m. ET. and then continuing on with the main card on Fox Sports 1 at 9 p.m.
See you then!