UFC 205 HYPE TRAIN IS IN FULL MOTION…
The UFC 205 hype train is in full motion. With the promotion’s New York City debut three days away and the United States election being complete, the MMA world can now focus on what may be the biggest show in UFC history.
Wednesday’s festivities were highlighted by the open workouts. The event was held on court at Madison Square Garden. The six fighters in the three title matches slated for Saturday night all participated.
While the workouts or more for exhibition and media purposes, and don’t really provide a lot of insight into what you can expect come fight time, it is a chance to get a visual cue as to how the weight-cutting process is going for the fighters.
Conor McGregor, who spent his last two fights at 170 lbs and will be challenging for the 155 lb. championship this weekend, looked good, and much less drawn out than he has before his bouts at Featherweight. McGregor was eager to fight in the world’s most famous arena. “You can feel the energy that the arena holds,” McGregor said. “There’s history in that arena. I felt it and I look forward to utilizing it on Saturday night.”
McGregor’s opponent, lightweight champion Eddie Alvarez looked good but had a faint black eye under his left eye, perhaps indicated some heavy sparring recently – something Alvarez has noted he does often before fights in the past.
Welterweight champion Tyron Woodley expressed his concern over being ranked below challenger Stephen Thompson in some MMA rankings. “Everybody always count me out,” Woodley told UFC cameras. “One person had him ranked above me. How do you have a challenger ranked above a champion?” The champion is automatically ranked #1 in UFC’s official rankings but MMA Torch allows for champions to be ranked below non-champions. In our most recent rankings, Tyron Woodley was ranked #1 followed by Thompson at #2.
Strawweight champion Joanna Jedrzejczyk was clearly depleted compared to how she looks in between fights but she was still pleasant when interviewed, saying “I’m happy to be part of it.”
The hype will pick up a notch on Thursday with a press conference scheduled for 3 p.m. Eastern. Conor McGregor’s last pre-fight press conference was cut short after he and Nate Diaz started throwing bottles and cans at each other. Things likely won’t get that out of hand but McGregor always has something up his sleeve. WATCH
THURSDAY NOTEBOOK ITEMS…
-You can watch today’s press conference live or on demand right here.
-Rashad Evans vs. Tim Kennedy has been rebooked for next month at UFC 206 in Toronto.
-After his USADA suspension becoming official this week, UFC stripped Jon Jones of the UFC Interim Light Heavyweight championship he won last year for beating Ovince St. Preux.
-UFC announced new shows for the first quarter of 2017 in addition to the previously announced shows in Phoenix, Houston, Halifax, and London, including: January 28 in Denver, Colorado (FOX); February 11 in Brooklyn, New York (UFC 209 PPV); March 3 and 4 in Las Vegas, Nevada (Fight Night and UFC 210 PPV); March 11 in TBA, Brazil (FS1).
Watch Eddie Alvarez’s championship win over Rafael dos Anjos from July HERE.
NOW CHECK OUT YESTERDAY’S UPDATE: WEDNESDAY NEWS DIGEST 11/9: Rashad Evans reacts and Kennedy wants new UFC 205 opponent, plus Notebook (w/Hiscoe’s Analysis)
(MMATorch’s Daily News Digest features the top story of the day with added analysis, plus smaller tidbits in the News Notes section. Mike Hiscoe, who writes the News Digest Sundays through Thursdays, has a background in film criticism and previously wrote for the DVD Town and Movie Metropolis websites. His passion for Mixed Martial Arts goes back to 2005, but it was in the promotion for UFC 60: Hughes vs. Gracie that he really got hooked.”This is my house, I build it,” is still among the all-time great UFC promos. You can follow Mike on social media under the tag @mikehiscoe. He now provides his experienced writing and perspective on live MMA events for MMATorch.)