Now that 2020 is officially behind us, we look ahead to the top five fights in 2021 that are sure to make the prospect of the New Year more enticing.
2020 is over.
Looking ahead, 2021 is expected to feature plenty of action with several stars building on their impressive last year to catapult them into blockbuster matchups in the next 12 months. The first quarter alone is expected to be jam packed with several champions targeting a return, giving us a loaded schedule through the winter and spring and likely culminate in another epic summer showcase.
Here’s a look at five fights set to come in 2021 that should have MMA fans salivating.
5. Patricio “Pitbull” Freire vs AJ McKee
If you know, you know.
Patricio “Pitbull” Freire has established himself as arguably the best fighter currently not competing in the UFC and is the fighter in Bellator who most feel would wreak havoc were he ever to step into the Octagon. He’s already achieved everything there is to in Bellator, setting records for victories in title fights and victories overall in the promotion. There is one small matter before this fight will materialize: Freire still has work to face former foe Emmanuel Sanchez in the semifinals of the Bellator Featherweight Grand Prix.
For all the young up-and-comers that have been seen over the years, it is not an exaggeration to say that AJ “The Mercenary” McKee may be the most talented prospect since Jon Jones. A dynamic striker, a lifelong wrestler with a dangerous submission game, and athletically gifted with height and reach, McKee has all the qualities to cement himself as the next big thing in MMA with a victory over Freire in the finals. Consider that he’d also be a world champion well under the age of 30 and you have a new era in the division that could last a very long time.