There are plenty of things to do on a Friday night. However, most don’t involve watching two men locked inside of a cage attempting to punch, kick, knee, and choke their way to victory. In reality, though, few things match the excitement.
The UFC returns to “Sin City” for their second event in less than seven days. Nebraska’s Jake “The Juggernaut” Ellenberger will look to push his current win streak to seven when he faces Martin “The Hitman” Kampmann in the main event.
If you weren’t planning on tuning in already, here are five reasons why you should invite some friends over, order a few pizzas, grab a couple beers, and tune into “The Ultimate Fighter: Live Finale” this Friday night, only on FX.
5. Martin Kampmann Looks For Another Shocking Victory
Martin Kampmann returns to the octagon fresh off his shocking third-round submission of Thiago Alves last March. “The Hitman” was getting picked apart badly by Alves until a foolish takedown by “The Pitbull” left an opportunity for Kampmann to synch in a fight ending guillotine choke. Kampmann has fought the best of the best at 170-pounds over the last three-years, defeating most of his opponents, but falling short against elite competition. At “The Ultimate Fighter: Live Finale”, Kampmann looks to keep his momentum going when he takes on Jake Ellenberger.
Kampmann possesses technical striking skills and solid grappling, but has struggled against fighters with massive knockout power that can bully him inside the cage. That’s exactly what he gets in Ellenberger. If the Danish fighter can weather the storm of “The Juggernaut”, he may be able to win three straight fights for the first time in his career as a welterweight.
4. “The Juggernaut” Makes A Case For A UFC Welterweight Title Fight
Jake “The Juggernaut” Ellenberger has been on an absolute tear as of late. Ellenberger is on a roll and appears to be in tremendous physical condition leading into the fight. Ellenberger has been plowing through the competition and only his only loss in the last three-years comes to current UFC interim welterweight champion Carlos Condit in a razor-thin split decision.
Ellenberger has looked incredible as of late and is creeping towards the top-3 in the welterweight division, however, he must get by Martin “The Hitman” Kampmann first. As stated above, Kampmann can never be counted out of a fight after his come-from-behind win over Thiago Alves. Ellenberger must be extremely cautious not to make any mistakes in this fight or he could wind up on the losing end.
If “The Juggernaut” hope to come out the victor in this fight, he is going to have to work hard for it.
3. Ultimate Fighter History Will Be Made
After 14 seasons of “The Ultimate Fighter” reality show in the books, there are not too many “firsts” left to make. The show has had it all from unpredictable moments to unlikely winners, but a significant milestone in “TUF” still has a spot in history.
The first ever “TUF: Live” champion will be crowned after 13 grueling weeks in the house. Al Iaquinta will compete for the third time in three weeks when he takes on the feel-good story of the season, Mike Chiesa. Both men had four tough fights to make it to finals, and only one win separates them from the six-figure UFC contract. Typically, fighters would have four to six months after the season ends to train for their fights, but not this time, the two fighters will compete just one week after the final episode of the show.
The stakes are high, as both desperately want the victory after spending 13 long weeks in the house. Only one can walk away victorious.
2. It’s Free!
The list of big names on the card is minimal, but Saturday’s UFC event from Las Vegas is legit. The first “TUF: Live” winner will be crowned, former TUF winner Jonathan Brookins faces Brazilian prospect Charles Oliveira and the main event has contendership implications in the welterweight division.
While it may be an underwhelming card in terms of big name fighters, let’s not forget that the most exciting UFC events usually tend to be the sleepers.
1. Two Of The Top Welterweights In The UFC Meet
The UFC’s first “TUF: Live Finale” is headlined by a clash of top-10 welterweights in Jake Ellenberger and Martin Kampmann. Ellenberger and Kampmann are both established contenders in the welterweight division and are looking to continue to climb the 170-pound ladder with a big win on Friday night. Both are very close to earning an opportunity to fight for the title, and a win for either would push them that much closer. UFC president Dana White has stated the winner of this bout will be near the top of the pecking order when it comes to the next title shot at 170lbs. Friday will determine who will continue their winning ways and who will slide down the ladder they were once so close to topping.
Kampmann possesses a skill set vastly different from Ellenberger. The Danish striker racks up wins by using superior technical striking to wear his opponents out and secure a submission or grind out a decision. Ellenberger, on the other hand, is a wrecking ball who looks to apply pressure to his opponents in the stand up and pepper them with punch after punch until they are knockout unconscious.
There’s a lot on the line in this clash of styles, only one man can come out the winner.
This article was written by Mike Bohn, founder and lead writer of FightCove.com. You can follow Mike on Twitter at @FightCoveMike. Also, be sure to follow @FightCove on Twitter and “Like” Fight Cove on Facebook.