MMA has been on hiatus for the first third of the month and fight fans addicted to the sport are starting to going through withdraws. Thankfully those of you suffering from the shakes get your fix this with Friday’s MFC 37. Things begin to pick up from there as there will be two UFC events as well as LFC 20.
Compared to others, May will go down as a slow month but that does not mean there aren’t good fights taking place this month. Originally there were two title fights scheduled for this month, but after Chris Barnett was not medically cleared to fight Smealinho Rama at MFC 37, there is now only one. That title fight is the UFC 160 main event between heavyweight champion Cain Velasquez and Antonio Silva.
Despite being a title fight the rematch of last year’s one-sided beating that Velasquez laid down on Silva is not one of the month’s top fights. These five however do make the cut:
UFC on FX 8: Belfort vs. Rockhold (May 18th)
Vitor Belfort vs. Luke Rockhold – The last man to hold the Strikeforce middleweight title will finally make his UFC debut. He takes on Vitor Belfort, who is coming off a knockout victory of Michael Bisping the last time the UFC was in Brazil. The Octagon returns to Brazil for this fight and Rockhold will have his hands full in his debut.
UFC 160: Velasquez vs. Bigfoot 2 (May 25th)
James Te Huna vs. Glover Teixeira – When these two light heavyweights with a lot of hype behind them meet, one of them will walk away with the win and potentially fins themselves in a #1 contenders match next. Teixeira has been wrecking things inside the Octagon and has won 18 fights in a row. Te Huna is no slouch in the wrecking department either but will be in hostile territory.
T.J. Grant vs. Gray Maynard – This lightweight bout will determine the next challenger for the UFC lightweight champion Benson Henderson. Maynard is coming off a win and is just two fights removed from back to back title fights with Frankie Edgar and is once again on the doorsteps of becoming a champion. Grant is undefeated as a lightweight at 4-0 earning two post fight bonuses in the process. This fight looked great before it was announced as the #1 contenders fight so the added reward only makes it better.
Donald Cerrone vs. KJ Noons – When this fight was announced the just things that came to mind was brawl. Cerrone will bring his kickboxing to the dance while Noons offers up his boxing. Noons will be making his UFC debut and having lost four of five needs a win to stay employed by ZUFFA. Cerrone is also coming off a loss in which he suffered his first professional KO and needs to bounce back to stay afloat in the lightweight division.
Mike Pyle vs. Rick Story – This welterweight fight appears on the UFC 160 preliminary card on FX but could easily have been on the main card. Story is stepping in as a late replacement for Gunnar Nelson and has a different style for Pyle to now deal win. Pyle has been riding an incredible high of a three fight winning streak while Story got back into the groove with a win his last time out. What originally looked like a ground battle now looks more likely as a standup fight with the late change.
Honorable Mention this month goes to the heavyweight co-main event of UFC 160. Former Champion Junior Dos Santos looks to get back to the top when he takes on Mark Hunt. If the fight remains standing you can expect serious fireworks but if Dos Santos decides to use his BJJ black belt then Hunt could be tapping very quickly. For this reason the fight remained out of the top five fights happening this month.