Top Five Fights to Look Forward to in 2021

Stipe Miocic UFC
Stipe Miocic, UFC 252 Press Conference Credit: Gabriel Gonzalez/Cageside Press

3. Stipe Miocic vs Francis Ngannou 2

Somehow, Francis Ngannou has cut a path of destruction back to a title shot that has been more frightening than his first.  First round stoppages of Curtis Blaydes, Cain Velasquez, Junior dos Santos, and Jaizinho Rozenstruik have “The Predator” looking arguably more dangerous than ever before.  His finish of Rozenstruik in particular was so devastating that when referee Dan Miragliotta stopped the fight, it appeared more like he was jumping in to save a life as opposed to calling an end to a match.

Current heavyweight kingpin Stipe Miocic has spent the last few years locked in a trilogy with another all-time great in Daniel Cormier.  After winning the series 2-1, Miocic has furthered his stranglehold as the best heavyweight in the world today.  His reign of dominance is on the cusp of ushering a new wave as a second victory over Ngannou would leave him only with new names such as Curtis Blaydes and Derrick Lewis who were barely kicking off their own UFC runs around the time Miocic first claimed championship gold.

Why does this bout stand out against the several expected in 2021?

Perhaps more than any other bout, the rematch between Miocic and Ngannou is expected to be among the most evenly matched fight of any high profile bout during the year.  Miocic has already proven that he is more than prepared to hold up against the power of Ngannou, and Ngannou could leap into crossover stardom as the Deontay Wilder of mixed martial arts should he dethrone the champion.

More importantly, the bout is expected to be a precursor to a true super fight…