UFC 99: The Comeback


UFC® 99: The Comeback

When: Saturday June 13th, 2009 3 pm EDT / 12 pm PDT

Venue: Lanxess Arena

Where: Cologne, North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany

TV: Pay-Per-View

It’s been sixteen years ago since the first Ultimate Fighting Championship took place inside of a chain link, octagon enclosure.  Royce Gracie, a Brazilian Jujitsu grappling expert, arm barred, choked and painfully submitted three other martial artists in one night to become the first Ultimate Fighting Champion.  Fast forward ninety-eight events to the present, and UFC 99 is just around the corner.  The sport of mixed martial arts, otherwise known as “MMA” has exploded in popularity in the past few years thanks mostly to the savvy promotion of the world’s premier organization, “The Ultimate Fighting Championship”.  On Saturday, June 13, UFC 99 “The Comeback” can be seen live on pay-per-view, and will be broadcast from the Lanxess Arena in Colgne, Germany.

In the main event, Rich “Ace” Franklin, the former 185 pound middleweight UFC champion, will face Wanderlei “The Axe Murder” Silva, the former 205 pound light heavyweight champion of the now defunct Japanese PRIDE Fighting organization.  They will meet in the cage at a catch weight of 195 pounds.  For hardcore fans, this is a dream match come true since both fighters wouldn’t normally meet due to differing weight classes.  UFC 99 is aptly named since both fighters are coming back after hard losses.  Franklin lost his last outing in UFC 93 to Dan Henderson who bested him to a judge’s decision, while Silva was knocked out by Quinton “Rampage” Jackson at UFC 92.

Fight fans have always debated as to what particular skill set a mixed martial artist should possess that will lead him to the taste of victory.  This fight is a compelling match up in that it pits a more methodical fighter against one who wins fights with overwhelming aggression.  Will Rich Franklin be able to utilize his counter-punching technical kickboxing skills and pick Silva apart shot by shot?  Or will Silva’s power and brawling fighting style be too overwhelming of a force to deal with?  One can philosophize and debate all day but the beauty is that there is only one way to find out.

Other fights featured before the main event are as follows, and in no particular order: In the heavyweight division Mirko Crocop Filipovic meets Mustapha Al Turk, and Cheick Kongo faces Cain Velasquez.  The only lightweight fight of the night puts Spencer Fisher against Caol Uno, while there will be two welterweight matches.  Marcus Davis will square off against Dan Hardy and Mike Swick will take on Ben Saunders.

Matchup #1:

Rich Franklin Ace

Height: 6’1” (185cm)

Weight: 185 lbs (84kg)

Record: 26-4-0

Name: Wanderlei Silva The Axe Murderer

Height: 5’11” (180cm)

Weight: 205 lbs (93kg)

Record: 32-9-1

Matchup #2

Name: Cheick Kongo

Height: 6’4” (193cm)

Weight: 240 lbs (109kg)

Record: 24-4-1

Name: Cain Velasquez

Height: 6’1” (185cm)

Weight: 240 lbs (109kg)

Record: 7-6-0

Matchup #3

Name: Mike Swick

Height: 6’1” (185cm)

Weight: 170 lbs (77kg)

Record: 13-2-0

Name: Ben Saunders Killa B

Height: 6’3” (191cm)

Weight: 170 lbs (77kg)

Record: 7-0-2

Matchup #4

Name: Marcus Davis The Irish Hand Grenade

Height: 5’10” (178cm)

Weight: 170 lbs (77kg)

Record: 21-5-0

Name: Dan Hardy The Outlaw

Height: 6’0” (183cm)

Weight: 170 lbs (77kg)

Record: 12-1-1

Matchup #5

Name: Spencer Fisher The King

Height: 5’7” (170cm)

Weight: 155 lbs (70kg)

Record: 23-4-0

Name: Caol Uno

Height: 5’7” (170cm)

Weight: 154 lbs (70kg)

Record: 14-4-3

Matchup #6

Name: Mirko Cro Cop

Height: 6’3” (191cm)

Weight: 220 lbs (100kg)

Record: 22-5-2

Name: Mustapha Al-Turk

Height: 6′ 2″ (188 cm)

Weight: 242 (110 kg)

Record: 6-4-0

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