On Saturday, UFC 237 will showcase returning stars, rising contenders and a championship bout featuring the best of the women’s strawweight division.
Starting off the night, we will see UFC hall of famer BJ Penn return to the octagon as he looks to pick up his first win in the UFC since 2010.
Since losing his lightweight title and his eight-year undefeated streak, Penn has lost six straight fights. His last fight came in December 2018 where he was quickly submitted by Ryan Hall. Penn will look to change his luck and get back into the win column.
Moving to the main card, Jose Aldo will look to make a push at a title shot with a win against Alexander Volkanovski. Since Aldo lost his title to Max Holloway in 2017, he got right back to work picking up back-to-back knockout victories including a win against Renato Moicano in February of this year.
Aldo is now 28-4 in his professional fighting career as he goes into Saturday.
Volkanovski, on the other hand, is not a name the casual fighting fan will most likely recognize. However, he is someone that deserves attention.
Volkanovski has won all of his first six fights in the UFC and has taken three of them by knockout. As a rising star that is already fourth in the division rankings, this win against a former champion is necessary to solidify his spot at the top of the division and throw his name into the title scene.
The co-main event of the evening hosts Anderson Silva’s second fight in his comeback. In his last fight, he lost a three-round decision to the current interim champion, Israel Adesanya. Now at age 44, Silva will attempt to make one last run at the championship and prove that he is still a dangerous fighter in the octagon.
His first step in that process will be fighting 10th ranked Jared Cannonier.
Cannonier is a talent that shows all-or-nothing power. If he is going to win on Saturday, it will most likely be by knockout as that is how all but one of his other UFC victories have been decided. Yet, his fighting style gives an experienced fighter, such as Silva, multiple openings to end the fight early, but Cannonier is prepared.
In a pre-fight interview, Cannonier said that he is expecting the best Silva we have ever seen, and he is prepared to face him head on.
The main event of the card features Rose Namajunas defending her strawweight title against the number one contender, Jessica Andrade. Both fighters are young talents that will bless the division for years to come.
Namajunas is coming into the fight at 26 with Andrade being one year older. However, Andrade has far more professional experience.
Andrade has won 19 of her 25 professional fights whereas Namajunas has only been in a total of 11 fights. With that being said, Namajunas is a well-rounded champion. She has shown her worth both on the ground and standing as she won her last three fights by a decision, a submission and a knockout.
If Namajunas wants to keep the title, she will have to take the fight to the ground. Namajunas has the advantage in the jiu-jitsu, and Andrade has shown her susceptibility to submission attempts throughout her career.
If Andrade wants to leave Saturday as the new champion, this fight will have to be a boxing match that Andrade carries into the later rounds were her strong cardio can guide her to a victory. Either way, this fight and the entirety of the card will be a good one as we look ahead to Saturday.