UFC 266: What to Expect?
Now to the line of days before the latest blockbuster event Ultimate Fighting Championship: UFC 266.
It is scheduled to take place on September 25, 2021 at the T-Mobile Arena in the paradise state of Nevada, the wrestling map is absolutely composed of three matches in particular.
The first one sees Alexander Valkanovsky against Brian Ortega at the UFC welterweight division. The UFC Women’s Lightweight Championship is also on the line with champion Valentina Shevchenko paired with Cynthia Calville. Last but not least, Nick Diaz is returning to the UFC. Robbie Lawler is a man who hopes to ruin Diaz’s return.
All three of these high-profile matches are sure to arouse great interest from both fans and athletes. If you are wondering which fighters you should support, we are behind you. Below we have compiled a universal guide to everything you need to know about the upcoming event.
Nick Diaz vs. Robbie Lawler
Many thought it would never happen, but six and a half years after his last UFC match — no competition against the legendary Anderson Silva- Nick Diaz returns. Diaz was one of the most controversial promotion stars in the 2010s.
At one time with the UFC he didn’t pass several drug tests, he first fought for the company back in 2003, where he defeated Jeremy Jackson at UFC 44 through filing. He then quickly picked up the card thanks to a second win over Jackson, as well as a win over Robbie Lawler – which he faces this month – Drew Fickett and Koji Oishi.
He eventually hit a wall in the UFC, however, taking over his talents elsewhere after defeating Glayson Tobau at UFC 65. Impressive at other promotions in the late 2000s, fans eager to see him return to the major leagues, and they eventually fulfilled their wish with Diaz returning to UFC 137, where he surpassed BJ Penn.
That win put him in the fight for the UFC welterweight championship, but he lost consecutive fights for the title to Carlos Candit and Georges Saint-Pierre. This was followed by the defeat of Silva, where both men did not pass drug tests.
After a famous career, the 38-year-old Diaz returns to where he became famous. His opponent at UFC 266 will be familiar to him when he defeated Lawler in 2004. Both men have changed a lot since then, making it difficult to predict.
Bookmakers believe that the fight is also difficult, even if Lawler is a small favorite UFC Odds 266. It is currently at -200 and Diaz can be supported at +100.
So which fighter is most likely to win. Well, as we mentioned, it’s seriously hard to name. Diaz, a decade ago, was a world-class fighter. A true master of mixed martial arts, he combines boxing and Brazilian jiu-jitsu into a truly devastating package. The only problem with his support is that he is partly an unknown number after such a long break in the sport.
Diaz will fill the confidence of the recent UFC record. Once an excellent middleweight fighter, he has recently been increasingly fueled by young talent, having won just one of his last six fights.
The next defeat of Diaz and Lawler falls even further, so he will be desperate to prove that he still has the opportunity to earn to be at the top of the accounts.
Alexander Valkanovsky v. Brian Ortega
While Diaz and Lawler are nearing the end of their careers, Alexander Valkanovsky and Brian Ortega are in the growth stage. The first is the UFC lightweight champion, but Ortega will despair to win the belt, losing the title fight against Max Holloway in 2018.
This is the only loss of Ortega’s professional career at the moment and he will not want to make a second against Valkanovsky.
However, a very difficult match awaits him. In his professional career, Valkanovsky lost only one fight – and it happened in 2013 in his native Australia. There have been 18 victories since then and he has already said there are confident of compliance later this month.
His fights tend to go the distance: six of the UFC’s nine fights end in victory. Meanwhile, Ortega is more likely to win the fight early. He has only won once in his UFC career. This should cause an intriguing clash of styles at UFC 266.
Valentina Shevchenko vs. Lauren Murphy
Valentina Shevchenko completes our three exciting matches against Lauren Murphy. Shevchenko has been holding the UFC Lightweight Championship for some time, first winning a belt from Joanna Edgeiczyk at UFC 231 back in December 2018. Since then, there have been five successful defensive actions, and bookmakers also consider her a favorite in this bout.
However, it can be a difficult evening for Cooley. Murphy in the hot series, scoring five impressive back wins against Marie Romero Borella, Andrea Lee, Roxana Modaferi, Lilia Shakirova and Joan Calderwood.
As she approaches her 40th birthday, Murphy will know that the time to win the title will run out, which will give her extra motivation to do the job at UFC 266.