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UFC 214 start time, TV schedule, who is fighting tonight at ‘Cormier vs Jones 2'

Esther Lin/MMA Fighting

Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) returns to the hurt business tonight (Sat. July 29, 2017) for UFC 214, which is set to go down from inside Honda Center in Anaheim, Calif., in one of the most highly-anticipated events of the year.

The pay-per-view (PPV) card will feature a Light Heavyweight title fight rematch between current champion Daniel Cormier and ex-division king, Jon Jones. The co-main event will feature a Welterweight title fight as Tyron Woodley defends his strap against Demian Maia, while Cris Cyborg and Tanya Evinger duke it out for the vacant women’s Featherweight title to round a out a trio of title fights.

What’s Hot:

The rematch we’ve all been waiting for is finally here. After injuries, failed drug tests and several out-of-the cage incidents have delayed the do-over between Jones and Cormier, the two men will finally put hands on each other inside the Octagon. And though it’s been two years since since they first scrapped, the rivalry between the two hasn’t cooled down one bit. In fact, it’s only intensified, as the anxiety both men have been feeling just to get at each other once more is off the charts. Both men have a lot on the line, as Cormier is fighting for revenge on the first — and only — man to defeat him, as well as a victory to silence doubters. “Bones,” meanwhile, will look to go two up against “DC,” as well as get the belt back that he never lost in a fight.

Also, Woodley will look for his third title defense when he faces off against Brazilian jiu-jitsu stud Demian Maia. This will be Maia’s second attempt to win a UFC title after coming up short against Anderson Silva way back in 2010. Woodley is adamant his wrestling will be good enough to thwart Maia’s ground game, but as we’ve seen in the past, the Brazilian can tap the best of them.

After winning her first two UFC fights and momentarily getting into hot water with USADA, and having to sit through a dreadful inaugural women’s Featherweight title fight, Cyborg will finally get the chance to realize her dream of becoming a UFC champion. And to be honest, she should have no issues taking out Evinger, even though she has won 10 in a row and is the current 135-pound Invicta FC champion. But, Cyborg is just a different beast, and barring a full lapse in concentration or fighting skills, I don’t see how she loses this fight.

What’s Not:

There’s not much to complain about with a stacked event like this!

Original Card vs. Actual Card:

While the event is still stacked, it did change a bit over time. Cris Cyborg was originally set to face Invicta FC 145-pound champion Megan Anderson, but Anderson was forced out with an injury, allowing Evinger to step in for a big title fight against Cyborg. Also, Chan Sung Jung was lined up to take on Ricardo Lamas before he was forced out with an injury. Lamas was then re-booked to take on Jason Knight.


Aside from Anderson and “Korean Zombie’s” devastating knee injury, Sage Northcutt was also bounced from the event with an injury just a few weeks ahead of fight night, subsequently scrapping his fight against John Makdessi, who also suffered an injury around the same time. Makdessi was replacing Claudio Puelles. Doo Ho Choi was struck down by the injury bug and forced out of his bout against Andre Fili, and was ultimately replaced by Calvin Kattar.

New Blood:

Kattar got the call up to the big leagues after racking up eight straight wins on the regional circuit, stepping in to face Fili on short notice. It won’t be an easy first bout, as Fili is as tough has they come and has plenty of years of Octagon experience.

How The “Prelims” Look:

The undercard is pretty good, to be honest. Lamas vs. Knight will headline the “Prelims” in an interesting 145-pound strap that will see Knight going for his fifth straight win, and possibly put his name on the Featherweight map. Also, Aljamain Sterling and Renan Barao will collide in a Catchwweight bout (140 pounds) after the California State Athletic Commission (CSAC) denied Barao’s attempt to fight at 135 pounds because of his past weight-cutting weight troubles.

Who Needs A Win Badly:

Let’s not kid around here. While Cormier is the defending 205-pound champion, he needs a win over “Bones” in a bad way. The loss to Jones -- the only one of his career -- still haunts him, and he’s been waiting more than two years just to get some get-back. If he gets a win over Jones, it assures “DC” a trilogy fight, which means more money in his pocket and a chance to get two wins over his bitter rival. Plus, it will stop all of the “he’s not the real champion” talk. A loss, however, could be disastrous for Cormier. In going down 0-2 to Jones, not only will it give “Bones” bragging rights for life, but it will be another loss that haunts Cormier for quite some time. And even though he has never hinted at retirement, he did say outside of another Jones fight, there isn’t much else that interest him in the division. That said, should he lose on Saturday night, he will be at a crossroads in his career. Does he stay at 205 to try to earn his way back to the title, and perhaps another fight against Jones -- a fight that seems unlikely as the promotion has rarely put together a trilogy fight after one fighter goes up two fights to none? He can always move back up to Heavyweight, as well.

Interest Level: 10/10

It’s rare that we get a fight card this good and it actually stays intact. Aside from the much-anticipated 205-pound rematch between Jones and Cormier -- who share the biggest rivalry in the history of the sport — and the other two title fights, we have Jimi Manuwa and Volkan Oezdemir fighting for 205-pound dominance. “Posterboy” has been pining for his shot at the strap and going at it with Cormier on social media. Should he get through Volkan, it will put him right at the top of the title race. As for Volkan, the jury is still out on him. Sure, he’s won four straight, including taking out highly-touted contender Misha Cirkunov in less than 30 seconds, but beating Ovince Saint Preux before that doesn’t necessarily put him into title contention. A win over Manuwa, though, could speed him up the ladder, just as the rest of his UFC career has gone thus far.

And finally, fight fans will be treated to what is sure-to-be an exciting Welterweight scrap between two of the most popular and talented strikers in all of the fight game as Donald Cerrone takes on Robbie Lawler in main card action. The fight was initially set to go down at UFC 213, but a blood infection bounced “Cowboy” from the card. These two men know nothing else than to let it all hang out once they step through the cage doors, as “Cowboy” and “Ruthless” have a history of putting on exciting bouts that always play out on the feet. This fight is a toss up, someone could go to sleep early, or we could have a 15-minute war that could resemble this. Either way, fight fans are in for a treat.

Full UFC 214 Fight Card:

UFC 214 PPV Main Event:

205 lbs.: UFC Light Heavyweight Champion Daniel Cormier vs. Jon Jones

UFC 214 Main Card on PPV (10 p.m. ET):

170 lbs.: UFC Welterweight Champion Tyron Woodley vs. Demian Maia
145 lbs.: Cristiane Justino vs. Tonya Evinger for vacant women’s featherweight title
170 lbs.: Donald Cerrone vs. Robbie Lawler
205 lbs.: Jimi Manuwa vs. Volkan Oezdemir

UFC 214 Undercard on FXX (8 p.m. ET):

145 lbs.: Jason Knight vs. Ricardo Lamas
140 lbs.: Renan Barao vs. Aljamain Sterling
145 lbs.: Renato Moicano vs. Brian Ortega
145 lbs.: Andre Fili vs. Calvin Kattar

UFC 214 Undercard on Fight Pass (6:30 p.m. ET):

115 lbs.: Alexandra Albu vs. Kailin Curran
125 lbs.: Jarred Brooks vs. Eric Shelton
155 lbs.: Josh Burkman vs. Drew Dober

For more upcoming UFC events click here.

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