UFC 295 Preview

Published on 10 November 2023 at 20:00

The UFC once again returns to Madison Square Garden for an anticipated fight card in November. After Jon Jones vs Stipe Miocic was cancelled as the headliner due to Jones having a pectoral injury, Jiri Prochazka and Alex Pereira are set to headline UFC 295 for the Vacant UFC Light Heavyweight Championship whilst Sergei Pavlovich vs Tom Aspinall becomes the new Co-Main Event for the Interim UFC Heavyweight Championship. Here is what you can expect and look forward in New York.


Early Prelims

Dennis Buzukja vs Jamall Emmers (UFC Featherweight Bout) – Dennis has not had a great start in the UFC after losing by Unanimous Decision at UFC Nashville. He looks to claim his first victory in the company.

Jamall has had a shaky five fights in the UFC with two wins and three losses. His most recent fight came against Jack Jenkins as Emmers lost by Unanimous Decision. A win at UFC 295 will give Jamall a 50%-win record in the organisation.


Joshua Van vs Kevin Borjas (UFC Flyweight Bout) – Van was victorious on his debut at UFC Jacksonville with a Split Decision victory. It is his first fight that has ended by decision as he looks to start a winning streak with the MMA promotion.

Borjas makes his debut at UFC 295 after earning a contract on the Dana White Contender Series (DWCS). He currently has nine wins to his MMA record with eight of those by KO/TKO and one loss by Submission.


John Castaneda vs Kang Kyong-ho (UFC Bantamweight Bout) – Castaneda has five fights in the UFC with his most recent fight ending victorious with a Unanimous Decision at UFC Vegas 74. A win could put him closer to the Bantamweight rankings.

Kang has been in the UFC since 2013 with seven wins, three losses and one No Contest. The South Korean’s last fight ended with a first-round Submission victory at UFC Vegas 75, making it his 12th Submission victory in his MMA career.


Jared Gordon vs Mark Masden (UFC Lightweight Bout) – Gordon has been very unlucky in his last two fights with a No Contest against Bobby Green at UFC Vegas 71 and a controversial loss at UFC 282 against Paddy Pimblett. Jared will look to get back to winning ways when his last victory happened back in August 2022 at UFC 278.

Masden has not fought in a year when he lost to Grant Dawson by third-round Submission as this would be the first loss on his MMA record. Mark will look to redeem himself at UFC 295 against a well-recognised opponent.


Preliminary Card

Nazim Sadykhov vs Viacheslav Borschev (UFC Lightweight Bout) – Sadykhov has two fights and two wins in the UFC, both with finishes at the UFC APEX. Every fight, apart from one, has ended by finish for Nazim as a win at UFC 295 could contest a position in the Lightweight rankings.

Borschev has had recent luck in the organisation after being triumphant at UFC Vegas 73 with a TKO win in the second round. With a 50%-win ratio in the UFC, a victory could take that stat one step better at UFC 295.


Mateusz Rebecki vs Roosevelt Roberts (UFC Lightweight Bout)  – Rebecki has had a cracking start in the UFC with a Unanimous Decision victory at UFC Vegas 67 and a TKO win at UFC Jacksonville. With a convincing winning streak in his career, Mateusz has true potential to be a big contender in the company.

Roberts returns to the UFC after two years when he lost by a spinning wheel-kick KO at UFC Vegas 34. His last victory with the MMA promotion was at the first UFC Vegas during COVID-19 when he scored a second-round Submission victory. Despite losing in the semi-final of the most recent season of The Ultimate Fighter, Roosevelt looks to come back with redemption with a big win in MSG.


Tabatha Ricci vs Lupita Godinez (UFC Women's Strawweight Bout) – Ricci is currently the #10 Strawweight contender with her most victories coming at UFC Jacksonville and UFC 285. Despite losing her UFC debut, which caused her to be undefeated no more, Tabatha has looked unstoppable and looks to grab a win at Madison Square Garden to rise up the Strawweight rankings.

Godinez has been a very active fighter in the UFC with her 10th fight in just over two years. Lupita was impressive at Noche UFC with a second-round Submission win and if she can get a victory at UFC 295, it will take her into the Strawweight rankings.


Steve Erceg vs Alessandro Costa (UFC Flyweight Bout) – Erceg entered the UFC Flyweight rankings on his UFC debut when he defeated the current #15 Flyweight contender, David Dvorak, by Unanimous Decision at UFC 289. Steve was originally meant to face Matt Schnell but after finding a replacement, he still has the opportunity to start a winning streak in the UFC.

Costa has two fights in the UFC with a KO loss at UFC Vegas 66 and a TKO win at UFC Vegas 75. A win against the #14 Flyweight contender could allow Alessandro to enter the Flyweight rankings and have his name noticed in the weight division.


Main Card

Diego Lopes vs Pat Sabatini (UFC Featherweight Bout) – Lopes got his first victory at UFC Nashville with a first-round Submission victory. Diego lost on his UFC debut to the current, undefeated #9 Featherweight contender, Movsar Evloev, at UFC 288. Lopes will look to be victorious in Madison Square Garden to be one step closer to the Featherweight rankings.

Sabatini has six fights in the UFC with only one loss. His most recent fight came against Lucas Almeida at UFC Vegas 75 where he won by second-round Submission. A win could put Sabatini in the same position as Lopes if he does impress the New York crowd.


Matt Frevola vs Benoit Saint-Denis (UFC Lightweight Bout) – Frevola is on a three-fight winning streak with them all ending by KO/TKO. This was a big redemption for him after losing in seven seconds against Terrence McKinney at UFC 263. Matt is currently the #14 Lightweight contender and with another KO/TKO just like his last three fights could send him up the Lightweight rankings.

Saint-Denis is on a four-fight winning streak with two Submissions and two KO/TKO victories. His only loss in his MMA career was on the Frenchman’s UFC debut where he lost by Unanimous Decision at UFC 267. A win at UFC 295 for Benoit could send him into the top 15 of the Lightweight rankings.


Jessica Andrade vs Mackenzie Dern (UFC Women's Strawweight Bout) – Andrade has not won since January at UFC 283 as she has lost her last three fights, two by Submission and one by TKO. The former UFC Strawweight champion has her fifth fight of the year at UFC 295 and looks to redeem the bad form she has recently had so that she can maintain her ranking.

Dern has only had one fight this year which came against Angela Hill winning by Unanimous Decision at UFC Vegas 73. Mackenzie’s last five fights have not gone as well as expected with three wins but two losses as she looks to start a winning streak and rise up the contender spots in the Strawweight rankings.


Sergei Pavlovich vs Tom Aspinall (Interim UFC Heavyweight Title Bout) - Pavlovich was originally the backup fighter for the Jones vs Miocic fight. Sergei has been on an incredible run in the UFC with a six-fight win streak and all the fights have ended by first-round KO/TKO. The Russian fighter has only lost once which was on his UFC debut against MMA veteran, Alistair Overeem. Pavlovich has been keen to fight the UFC Heavyweight champion ever since he defeated Curtis Blaydes at UFC Vegas 71 as a win at UFC 295 will do just that.

Aspinall has been an eye-catching Heavyweight to watch as well with six victories in the UFC, five ending in the first round. Aspinall took an unfortunate loss last year at UFC London where he injured his leg in the first 15 seconds when fighting Curtis Blaydes. Tom would return in July to knockout Marcin Tybura in the first round and make a statement that he deserves to face the winner of Jones and Miocic. Like Sergei, the English-born fighter is very key on fighting the considered G.O.A.T of the UFC.

Jiri Prochazka vs Alex Pereira (Vacant UFC Light Heavyweight Title Bout) - Prochazka last fought in June 2022 when he became the new UFC Light Heavyweight champion at UFC 275 after submitting Glover Teixeira in the fifth round. Jiri has only had three fights in the UFC with all of them being victories, two of them ending by KO/TKO and one by Submission. With 29 wins on his MMA record, 28 of them have ended with a finish as the Czech Republican has just only one win by a decision. Prochazka will look to not only become a two-time Light Heavyweight champion but keep a 100% finish rate in the UFC at Madison Square Garden.

Pereira recently fought at UFC 291 where he won a close Split Decision against former UFC Light Heavyweight champion, Jan Blachowicz. Alex has previously won the UFC Middleweight title after defeating Israel Adesanya in the fifth round by TKO in MSG at UFC 281. Coincidentally, 'Poatan' also won his UFC debut in Madison Square Garden with a terrific TKO at UFC 268 against Andreas Michailidis. Pereira has the opportunity to become a two-division champion in just over two years if he can win at UFC 295. The Brazilian fighter has experienced being a two-dvisional champion when he was in Glory Kickboxing, winning both the Middleweight and Light Heavyweight belts.

Who do you think will become the new UFC Light Heavyweight Champion? Who will become the Interim UFC Heavyweight Champion

What are your predictions?

Featured Image: Flickr, Brittany Chay, DevianArt, kungfufrogmma

Written by Charlie Oxtoby


Instagram: charlie_oxtoby

MMA Instagram: undisputed_mma

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