UFC 245 Round Table: Will the Blessed Era Continue?

Max Holloway, UFC 240
Max Holloway, UFC 240 Ceremonial Weigh-In Credit: Jay Anderson/Cageside Press

This weekend’s UFC 245 features three title fights, and a whole lot of questions. We tackle some of the biggest in our latest round table discussion.

UFC 245 is upon us, the final PPV event of the Ultimate Fighting Championship’s 2019 schedule. The penultimate event of 2019 period. And one of the biggest cards of the year, with a full three title fights — not a single one a made-up belt.

There are plenty of questions heading into Saturday night — we’ll do our best to answer some of the biggest.

Does the Blessed Era continued after UFC 245, or can Volkanovski dethrone the king?

Jay Anderson: It’s just too damn hard to bet against Max Holloway. And I’m not saying that because he’s adopted Toronto (and pretty much Canada) as the 10th island. His only misstep in years came against Dustin Poirier at lightweight. I’m not about to bet against him at 145lbs.

Gabriel Gonzalez: Holloway has officially reached the point, at featherweight, where it’s difficult to pick against him not finding a way regardless of the opponent. I fully expect him to continue his run against the current crop of contenders.

Michael Lynch: The blessed era will continue. Max finishes him in the forth round.

Josh Evanoff: I think the Blessed Era is going to continue until we see someone with the power to stop Max. Volkanovski has a lot of power, but he’s also at a massive size disadvantage. He’s going to have to be able to get inside on Max and impose his will, but he’d have to get by Max’s jab and 1-2’s which are some of the best in the game. I believe Max keeps his stranglehold on 145.

Paarth Pande: Yes, blessed era continues. He’s shown great domination so far and has also bounced back gracefully from his last loss against Dustin Poirier.

Dan Doherty: It’s certainly possible. I was on the Volkanovski train for a long time and doubted him before the Jose Aldo fight, thinking it would be a bad match-up. I was wrong. He looked brilliant. Volkanovski has the three-round cardio to match Holloway. From there, who knows. He’s strong as hell and I can’t wait for this fight.

If Amanda Nunes defeats Germaine de Randamie, where does she compete next – 35 or 45?

Jay Anderson: Every fiber of my being wants to say featherweight, but against who? With Cyborg gone, there’s a real question as to whether the division should be closed. The existence of the UFC women’s featherweight title seems like a marketing move to remind fans that Amanda Nunes is a double-champ. And she is, but she has no division over which to reign, because the UFC never bothered growing it. Realistically the move is to let fighters like Felicia Spencer and Megan Anderson join Cyborg in Bellator, where a real 145lb weight class exists. But that means no more double-champ status for The Lioness, and Anderson/Spencer may not be too keen on the idea. What a mess.

Gabriel Gonzalez: Nunes will stay at 135. She is at her most optimal weight at bantamweight and there are more options for her there. What this means for the 145 division or who could be next at 135 is a more difficult question, but if Nunes is dictating the terms then why not continue to fight where she’s at her best?

Michael Lynch: If Nunes beats GDR she will vacate the 145lb belt and continue defending 135. I wouldn’t be surprised if they took the entire 145lb division away now that Cyborg is gone.

Josh Evanoff: It really comes down to who the UFC values as a title contender they can market, either Aspen Ladd or Megan Anderson. Nunes has said she wants to defend 145 next, but she also said that after the Holm fight. I could see Nunes taking on Anderson next, probably just to defend the title and add another belt to her collection. She already has one of the new designs, she probably wants two.

Paarth Pande: In my opinion at 35. Had Cyborg been in the UFC then that fight would make sense. At 35 Ketlen Vieira is a rising contender. If she wins this weekend, it should be her versus Nunes.

Dan Doherty: 135 because who is at 145? Megan Anderson? No way.