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Clint Hester Has Quietly Become a Middleweight Prospect

June 30th, 2014 at 4:04 PM
By Steven J Cavagnino

Through his stand up skill, athleticism, and raw potential Clint Hester, cast member of The Ultimate Fighter 17, has slowly clawed his way up the middleweight ranks to put together a streak of 4 wins. Since losing the show in the opening round, Hester has won 4 straight fights in the UFC, with 2 of them coming by TKO. 

At UFC Fight Night 44, he was put against his stiffest test in Brazilian Antonio Braga Neto. Coming into the fight, his grappling ability was thought to be his downfall in this fight. On paper, Clint is a blue belt in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, while Neto is not only a black belt, but an accomplished black belt practitioner. Once the fight hit the ground, it was thought that the fight would be over quickly. Hester’s stand up ability and professional boxing experience was going to be the key to his victory. 

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Cub Swanson Defeats Jeremy Stephens at UFC Fight Night 44

June 29th, 2014 at 2:59 PM
By Steven J Cavagnino

The main event of UFC Fight Night 44 pitted Cub Swanson against Jeremy Stephens in a featherweight battle that was rumored to determine who would next fight for the 145 pound title. Stephens, a former lightweight was coming off a 3 fight win streak while Swanson is riding an incredible 5 fight win streak, with 4 knockouts. 

The first few rounds of the fight saw each fighter trade dominance, with Swanson winning the first, Stephens bullying his way around the cage to win the second, and Swanson adjusting and winning the third. 15 minutes into the fight, it became evident where each man would be successful. Swanson, the smaller man, had to use his accuracy, speed, and varied arsenal of attacks to keep Stephens on his heels. Stephens had to do his best to march through Swanson’s attacks and land the punches he is famous for.

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Nate Marquardt Spoils New Zealand Homecoming for James Te Huna

June 29th, 2014 at 12:24 PM
By Steven J Cavagnino

In the main event of UFC Fight Night New Zealand, James Te Huna, former top ten light heavyweight, took on Nate Marquardt, former Strikeforce Welterweight champion and UFC Middleweight title challenger. The fight took place at the 185 pound limit of middleweight, despite both men’s last fight taking place above and below the weight class, respectively. Of the two fighters, Marquardt was the only one to have experience at middleweight, though for a long time before this fight, he fought at welterweight. Te Huna, on the other hand, fought his entire career at light heavyweight where he weighed in at 205 pounds. This was Te Huna’s first attempt at dropping 20 pounds and trying his luck at middleweight

Many believed, despite the experience difference, it was the size difference between the two fighters that was gonna make this fight. Te Huna was never a small light heavyweight and, at middleweight, he looked huge for the weight class. Marquardt, who is obviously capable of making 170 pounds, didn’t look out of place at middleweight, though Te Huna was the bigger man. 

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Charles Oliveira and the Slippery Path to Greatness

June 29th, 2014 at 12:00 PM
By Steven J Cavagnino

This past Saturday, the UFC held a Fight Pass Event in New Zealand. On the main card were two big names in James Te Huna and Nate Marquardt. These men, both, at one time, at the top of their division, served as the main event for a card that otherwise lacked star power. The home fans of New Zealand were catered to as two of the biggest stars to ever fight out of the country were lined up to be the main and Co-main event. But the fighter who might have the most potential to become a champion sat quietly three fights down from the main event. 

Charles Oliveira, a UFC veteran of both the lightweight and featherweight divisions, is the type of fighter who can raise eyebrows at any moment in his career. At only 24 years old, Oliveira has 11 fights in the UFC, and an impressive record of 7-4, the word that describes this fighter best is simply: potential. Oliveira won on Saturday night, choking out former top Japanese featherweight, Hatsu Hioki. With this win, Oliveira is now riding a 2 fight submission streak, a place where he has been 3 different times in his career. Interestingly, everytime Oliveira has put two back-to-back submission wins together in his UFC career, he has lost his next fight. With that being said, his losses have only come from the best of the best. Former #5 lightweight in the world, Jim Miller, former #1 WEC lightweight contender and top 5 Donald Cerrone, #3 featherweight in the world Cub Swanson, and former lightweight champion, and #1 featherweight contender, Frankie Edgar. The latter he took the distance in an exciting fight. 

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UFC Fight Night 44: Swanson Vs. Stephens Full Weigh in Results

June 27th, 2014 at 5:42 PM
By Steven J Cavagnino

UFC Fight Night 44 will be the second UFC event taking place this weekend. This event is headlined by two dynamic featherweight fighters in Cub Swanson and Jeremy Stephens. Both Swanson and Stephens are poised to stake a claim at the featherweight title and both competitors believe that, with a win over the other, they will be the #1 contender in the 145 pound division. In the co-main event, Ultimate Fighter season 17 winner, Kelvin Gastelum, will put his 9-0 undefeated record on the line against European talent, Nico Musoke, who has won his last 8 fights. 

With Swanson and Stephens throwing some serious leather, it will fall to the rest of the card to up their performances. Ask Gastelum to perform, and he will, no matter what the stakes. Both Gastelum and Swanson have looked unstoppable as of late, but both are facing some serious threats to their recent success. The stakes are high, but pressure makes diamonds, and both Gastelum and Swanson will look to win big. With Stephens and Musoke playing the spoiler role, it will be an exciting night of fights and, ultimately, the fans win with this stacked card. 

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