UFC 263
Photo Credit: MMA Fighting

FSM Essential Preview: UFC 263 – Adesanya vs Vettori



Another weekend is upon us as the UFC returns with a two titles on the line in the form of rematches from Glendale, Arizona.


UFC 263
Photo Credit: Esther Lin/MMA Fighting

Headlining UFC 263 will be a middleweight showdown between current champion Israel Adesanya (20-1 15 KOs) returning to 185lbs to defend his throne against Marvin Vettori (17-4 9 SUBs).

They faced off previously at UFC on Fox in 2018. Both fighters were young in their UFC careers as it was Izzy’s second contest while it was the fourth for Vettori. The bout went to decision in favor of Izzy via split decision. This was the champion’s toughest fight in MMA at the time, and Vettori felt it should’ve been his hand raised instead.

Since their bout, both have found success in the octagon. Izzy went on to become the division champion while Vettori is on a 5 fight winning streak. It seemed inevitable that these two would clash again as it was a tough battle the first go around, and both kept improving their games going forward, piling up victories. The challenger will look to get this bout to the mat and utilize his strength and grappling advantage against the outstanding kickboxer. Although Izzy has made strides in the grappling department, his last bout saw him try to become a double champ and challenge for the Light Heavyweight title in an unsuccessful attempt. Mainly due to his still-growing ground game. Can the champ keep the fight on its feet and show off his highlight reel-like skills? Will we see a grind-out style match on the ground for five rounds? And Still or And New? We will find out Saturday night.



In the co-main event, another rematch takes place between two warriors who gave us an all time classic in their first bout. Will act 2 live up to their previous showing?



Photo Credit: Zuffa LLC/Getty Images

Deiveson Figueiredo (20-1 9 KOs 8 SUBs) will look to show that while the first match went to a draw, that he is the true king of the 125lbs division. Brandon Moreno (18-5 10 SUBs) is out to show that his wall-to-wall fight with the champion was no fluke, and he’s here to dethrone the champion and become the head of the table. Both fighters are equally adaptable in the grappling department, showed by their combined 18 wins via submission. Where Moreno showed a big surprise was his ability to stand and trade with the champion. Not many can say they stood toe to toe with their Brazilian champion and saw the last bell. While a point deduction in the first fight made the final score a draw, make no mistake, both warriors pushed each other to the limit. Adjustments and execution will be key in this rematch, which will surely bring fireworks.

Speaking of fireworks, we will see a welterweight showdown between Leon Edwards (18-3 6 KOs) take on Nate Diaz (20-12 11 SUBs). These two were set to meet at UFC 262, but an injury forced Diaz to pull out and postpone the bout. Edwards, who’s on an 8 fight winning streak, is looking to show why he deserves another shot at the last man to beat him, who happens to be the division champion, Kamaru Usman. The striker has shown he is one of the most well-rounded stand-up fighters at 170lbs, but unfortunately, due to COVID-19, he missed his chance to fight for the title last year. Now looking for the biggest win of his career that’s sure to put him on deck for a title bout later this year. Standing across from Edwards is fan favorite and one of the biggest stars in the sport, Nate Diaz. Diaz hasn’t fought since he lost the BMF (Baddest Mother F’er) title to Jorge Masvidal in November 2019. Stepping back in the cage after the long layoff and ready to show he’s not just a big name but still a top contender, the Stockton Bad Boy is back and ready to mark his territory. This bout will be the first non-main event non-title fight to be a five-rounder. More action? Yes, please.


UFC Fight Night will surely be a fun event to watch as modern day gladiators step in the octagon to do battle. 



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-Kalani Lua – Franchise Sports Media


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