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.
For the first time since Aug. 2008, the octagon heads to “The Twin Cities” for a UFC event as UFC on FX 5: Browne vs. Bigfoot takes place this Saturday (October 5th) from the Minneapolis, Minnesota. A five-round heavyweight bout headlines the event as undefeated Travis “Hapa” Browne takes on former EliteXC heavyweight champion Antonio “Bigfoot” Silva.
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 UFC on FX 5: Browne vs. Bigfoot this Saturday at 8:00 p.m. ET/5:00 p.m. PT, only on FX.
5. A Stacked Preliminary Card
Prior to the main card on FX, the entire UFC on FX 5 preliminary card will be shown live on Facebook and FUEL TV for fans to enjoy. Eight solid match ups are featured on the preliminary card, which is headlined by a lightweight contest between two dynamic strikers in Jeremy Stephens and Yves Edwards.
Seven other intriguing bouts round out the preliminary card with notable veterans Dennis Hallman, Danny Castillo, Jacob Volkmann, Diego Nunes and Mike Pierce set to compete.
The UFC prelims typically feature fighters looking to make a name in the organization, however, Friday’s preliminary card features a mix of up-and-comers and exciting veterans. Expect some great fights between the 16 athletes battling it out on the prelims.
4. “The Juggernaut” Returns
Prior to his last fight, a second round TKO loss to Martin Kampmann, Jake “The Juggernaut” Ellenberger was on an tear, winning six fights in a row and nearing a title shot. Ellenberger had been plowing through the competition and was pegged as a title contender in the near future before he was stopped him in his tracks by Kampmann.
Ellenberger gets back in the cage for the first time since the loss to Kampmann this Friday when he takes on a fighter he has met once before in Jay Hieron. The 27-year-old fought Hieron at an IFL event in 2006 and lost a unanimous decision. Ellenberger has improved by leaps and bounds since that fight, as has Hieron. The Nebraska native is highly motivated going into UFC on FX 5 and is out to prove he is still one of the elite fighters in the UFC at 170-pounds as well as earn redemption and prove he is a better fighter. Hieron is a dangerous opponent, so Ellenberger must be extremely cautious not to make any mistakes or he could wind up on the first two-fight losing streak of his career.
If “The Juggernaut” hopes to come out the victor in this fight, he is going to have to work hard for it.
3. Flyweights Fight For A Title Shot
The first challenger to newly crowned UFC flyweight champion Demetrious Johnson will be determined on Oct. 5 when “The Ultimate Fighter” season 14 winner John Dodson welcomes UFC newcomer Jussier Formiga to the octagon in a featured bout at UFC on FX 5.
Dodson won “The Ultimate Fighter” competing as a bantamweight but immediately dropped down to flyweight once the UFC introduced the weight class. “The Magician” is one of the fastest fighters in the division and holds serious finishing abilities in his hands as seen by his quick knockout of T.J. Dillashaw in the “TUF 14” Finale. The 28-year-old had title aspirations as soon as a 125-pound weight class opened up and he is now only one fight away from challenging for the gold.
Formiga has the chance to do what few fighters before him have done by earning a title shot in his debut fight in the UFC. Even though the Brazilian has not been fighting in the organization to this point, he is still one of the top-5 flyweights in the world with his only career loss coming to fellow flyweight contender in Ian McCall. Formiga is a very dangerous grappler who has won half of his fights by submission.
The UFC is wasting no time in putting together another flyweight title fight after Demetrious Johnson edged Joseph Benavidez at UFC 152 to win the belt. Of all the fighters currently signed with the organization, Dodson and Formiga are by far the most compelling challengers for “Mighty Mouse” and with so much on the line it should be an extremely entertaining bout. The flyweights are always fun to watch, but when they are competing for a shot at UFC gold it just makes things that much more fascinating.
2. A Heavyweight Headliner
Two massive, powerful heavyweights headline the UFC’s first trip to Minneapolis since UFC 87 when undefeated Travis “Hapa” Browne takes on former EliteXC heavyweight champion and former Strikeforce heavyweight contender Antonio “Bigfoot” Silva.
Browne had a fight lined up for UFC on FOX 4 on Aug. 4, but was forced off the card after his scheduled opponent, Ben Rothwell, was forced off the card just nine days prior to the event. Although a search for a replacement did occur, no suitable opponent could be found on short notice and the 30-year-old was pulled from the card. The situation worked out for the better, though, as Browne will headline a UFC event for the first time in his career. Browne is currently undefeated in five UFC appearances and has won three of those bouts by knockout or submission.
Silva is coming off a first round TKO loss to former UFC heavyweight champion Cain Velasquez at UFC 146 last May. The fight against Velasquez was Silva’s first with the organization after a five-fight stint in the Strikeforce organization where he picked up wins over Andre Arlovski, Mike Kyle and Fedor Emelianenko. The Brazilian is in a must-win situation after losing back-to-back fights and will look to rebound from a disappointing octagon debut with a strong performance against Browne.
Something crazy is sure to happen when Browne and Silva step into the cage. With a combined 25 finishes out of 29 career wins, Browne and Silva like to fight until their opponent is either knocked out or gives up due to submission. Expect a battle regardless of where the fight takes place and given the history of the two big men, the chances of the fight going five full rounds are laughably minimal.
1. The Event Is Free
For the fourteenth time this year, the UFC will deliver a free card to the fans, this one going down at Target Center in Minneapolis, Minnesota, a city where the organization has not held an event since UFC 87 in Aug. 2008.
If you’re tight on cash and can’t afford to spend $55 on next weekend’s UFC 153 pay-per-view event, the organization has put together a terrific fight card for Friday that won’t cost you a dime. There are a few bouts on the card with immediate title implications as well as a number of extremely enticing match ups including the main event of Travis Browne vs. Antonio Silva. Aside from the main event, familiar names like Jake Ellenberger, John Dodson, Josh Neer and Jeremy Stephens are set to compete.
If you’re in the mood for a UFC fix, tune into UFC on FX 5 this Saturday night at 8:00 p.m. ET/5:00 p.m. for some free UFC action.