What Have Been the Best Performances in UFC In 2021?

What Have Been the Best Performances in UFC In 2021?
UFC

It has been another fantastic year in UFC in 2021 after being treated to some truly memorable fights in the 28th year of promotion.

Here is a look at the pick of the performances and what the future may hold for the fighters.

Francis Ngannou Wins Heavyweight Title

Back in March, Francis Ngannou went into a rematch with Stipe Miocic looking to avenge his defeat with the heavyweight champion from UFC 220. On a run of four victories, The Predator was in good form prior to the event. 

Ngannou has been blowing his opponents away over the last two years and his power proved too much for Miocic, who was stopped in the second round of the contest. The victory ensured the Cameroon-born fighter fulfilled a dream of becoming the world heavyweight champion.

The success helped Ngannou move up to number five in the UFC’s pound-for-pound ranking. The dangerous puncher is now being linked with former cruiserweight champion Jon Jones in what would be one of the biggest fights in UFC history. It would generate a lot of interest, not just in viewership, but also betting, as UFC fans could be split on who they back to prevail.

Although a Ngannou-Jones contest has yet to be agreed, some bookmakers are already quoting odds on the fight, with Ngannou being the favourite to defend his title. This portrays the excitement around the event, as a victory for the heavyweight champion would see him move up the pound-for-pound list again.

Ngannou could also fight Ciryl Gane at some point over the next six months, and in some of the best betting sites in Australia, there is very little between these two men in the odds. In fact, some sites like bet365 can’t split them, putting them both at 10/11. This suggests we are in for an especially explosive fight, one which fans can’t wait to see. 

Jan Blachowicz Inflicts first Defeat on Israel Adesanya

UFC 259 presented a fascinating light heavyweight contest between Jan Blachowicz and Israel Adesanya. The latter was unbeaten going into that fight but was stepping up from the middleweight division.

Blachowicz defeated Adesanya by unanimous decision. It was a spectacular five rounds and a huge win for the Polish man in what was the first defence of the title he picked up when beating Dominic Reyes.

The size difference in this fight worked in Blachowicz’ favour. He is ranked second in the light heavyweight division but with Jones set to move up to heavyweight, it won’t be long before he takes that top spot.

Blachowicz is scheduled to meet Glover Teixeira at UFC 267. The defending champion is the odds-on favourite in the betting to win that main event.

Dustin Poirier Stops Conor McGregor Twice

Former interim lightweight champion Dustin Poirier settled his trilogy with Conor McGregor in 2021. The American won both of his two fights with the Irish fighter this year, both of which were inside the distance.

All the way back in January, the two men fought at UFC 257. Poirier prevailed by TKO in the second round as his opponent could not handle the flurry of punches that came his way. The victory avenged his loss to Notorious when the two men clashed in a featherweight fight in 2014.

Poirier and McGregor met for a third time at UFC 264. The American needed just one round on that occasion as his opponent broke his leg. The doctors ended the contest, with victory going the way of the Diamond.

Back-to-back wins over McGregor has ensured Poirier has a world lightweight title shot at UFC 269.

Charles Oliveira Makes UFC History

Brazil’s Charles Oliveira holds numerous records in the UFC. He added another to his accomplishments when he stopped Michael Chandler in the second round of their contest back in May at UFC 263, becoming the fighter with the most stoppages (17).

Olivera became the lightweight champion with that victory over Chandler as the vacant belt was on the line. It is the first time he has held a world title with the UFC since he joined the promotion in 2010.

Do Bronx had to overcome some adversity in that fight against the former Bellator champion as he was dropped in the first round. He quickly recovered and did not take long to pick up the technical knockout.

The next big test for Olivera will come against Poirier in December. Despite being the champion, he is the underdog in the betting at 5/4 to retain his belt at the end of that affair in Las Vegas.

Hopefully, we see another big year in 2022 with many more big fights inside the UFC octagon. 

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