This Saturday's fight card headlined by Cory Sandhagen and Song Yadong has potential to be another great Fight Night in the UFC Apex. Even with the guaranteed banger co-main between Sodiq Yusuff and Giga Chikadze being called off due to an injury suffered by the Georgian, we still have a loaded card coming up. Here are 5 fights that I believe will deliver this weekend.
Cory Sandhagen vs. Song Yadong
The fight this card was built around, as Jon Anik would say, is a fantastic matchup between two studs in the bantamweight division.
Sandhagen has already proven his elite status, by taking former champs TJ Dillashaw and Petr Yan to decision in two incredible fights. There is great reason to believe he won the fight with Dillashaw as well. He has a truly unique skillset that most fighters fail to figure out, and will hang with the best of the 135 division.
Song Yadong is one of the most intriguing prospects the UFC has to offer. Still only 24 years old, he is 8-1-1 in the organization, with an impressive resume of experienced fighters faced, with two of the most notable including defeating current contender Marlon "Chito" Vera by decision, and knocking out former title challenger Marlon Moraes in his most recent victory.
This will be Song's first time going 5 rounds in the UFC, where Sandhagen has gone all 25 minutes in his last 2 fights. Song's cardio will be tested by the always game Sandhagen, if the fight goes that far...
Gregory "Robocop" Rodrigues vs. Chidi "Chidi Bang Bang" Njokuani
This fight is a kickboxing fan's dream. The new co-main event between Rodrigues and Njokuani is almost guaranteed to be fun while it lasts.
Gregory Rodrigues has been in some wars since entering the UFC. His fight against Jun Yong Park was just a bonkers back and forth fight that no one knew who would eventually get the win. Robocop's most recent fight against Julian Marquez was the best he has looked while in the UFC, as he scored a first round knockout after dominating Marquez for 3 minutes.
Njokuani is a very experienced fighter, as he has fought in top organizations such as LFA and Bellator. The end of his Bellator run didn't quite go his way, but he took his chance on Dana White's Contender Series and ran with it, scoring a violent TKO in that fight and 2 more early knockouts in the UFC. With a matchup against another great kickboxer, can Chidi continue his streak of knockouts in the UFC?
Both fighters are huge middleweights, which can only lead fans to wonder how a matchup with current champ Israel Adesanya would go if they got to that point. The DWCS alums will do battle Saturday and take a huge step in their careers with a win.
Damon Jackson vs Pat Sabatini
If Rodrigues vs Njokuani is a kickboxing fan's dream, this fight is a grappling fan's dream. Both Jackson and Sabatini have double-digit wins by submission in their careers, and will look to add to that total at the Apex.
Damon Jackson has been on a tear since returning to the UFC almost exactly two years ago. His first run in the company only lasted 3 fights, where he didn't record a single victory. Jackson has fantastic jiu jitsu, and could put that to the test against a great wrestler in Sabatini.
Pat Sabatini debuted in the UFC in 2021, and has gone 4-0 since, with three unanimous decision wins and a quick submission. He will be looking to take Jackson to the ground, which should lead to many entertaining grappling exchanges.
Both fighters are competing for more respect from the UFC, as the winner could enter the top 15 rankings in the loaded featherweight division.
Joe Pyfer vs. Alen Amedovski
"Be Joe Pyfer"
This was what Dana White said about Joe Pyfer after his victory on episode 1 of the current season of Dana White's Contender Series, as Pyfer was the only fighter to earn a contract with the UFC after that night of fights. Pyfer not only dominated Osman Diaz, the LFA middleweight champ at the time, but finished the fight, and was fired up after. Pyfer is very well rounded, and can become one of Dana White's favorite fighters with a few fun wins.
Amedovski has had a rough start to his UFC career suffering his 3 career losses in 3 fights in the organization. Before the UFC, he was 8-0 with every single fight ending in a knockout. This is a man who is fighting for his job, which is a situation that Joe Pyfer cannot afford to overlook.
UFC Fight Night 211 has a lot of fun fights on deck, finishing with title implications in what I believe is the UFC's deepest division. What fight/storyline excites you the most?