TWO THRILLING CHAMPIONSHIP FIGHTS HEADLINE UFC RETURN TO BOSTON
Las Vegas – UFC will return to Boston with a pair of blockbuster title fights. Heavyweight champion Stipe Miocic looks to set a new divisional title-defense record when he battles ferocious knockout artist and No.1-ranked Francis Ngannou. Also, light heavyweight champion Daniel Cormier defends against power punching and No.2-ranked Volkan Oezdemir. UFC 220 goes down Saturday, January 20 from TD Garden and will be available live on pay-per-view.
Miocic has his eyes on the record books. The former NCAA Division I wrestler and Golden Gloves boxing champion captured the UFC belt with a stunning first-round knockout win over Fabrício Werdum last year. Since then, he’s secured consecutive knockout victories over Alistair Overeem and Junior Dos Santos to tie Cain Velasquez, Brock Lesnar, Tim Sylvia and Randy Couture on the consecutive heavyweight title-defense list.
Standing in his way is perhaps the scariest fighter on the UFC roster in Ngannou. Formerly homeless on the streets of Paris, the powerful striker discovered MMA in 2013 and began his meteoric rise to the top of the heavyweight ranks. Joining the UFC roster only two years ago, Ngannou has turned heads with stoppage wins over Andrei Arlovski, Curtis Blaydes and Luis Henrique. At UFC 218 earlier this month, he sent shockwaves through the heavyweight division with his spectacular one-punch knockout victory against Overeem.
Will Miocic make history, or will Ngannou realize his dream of being UFC heavyweight champion?
Cormier will look to put his no contest against Jon Jones behind him with a dominant performance against Oezdemir. Originally capturing the championship with a submission win over Anthony Johnson, the two-time wrestling Olympian secured successful title defenses against Alexander Gustafsson and Johnson, in a highly anticipated rematch. A victory over Oezdemir reaffirms Cormier’s spot as the 205-pound king.
A heavy-handed kickboxer, Oezdemir has rapidly ascended the UFC light heavyweight rankings since making his debut less than one year ago. Following a short-notice decision win over Ovince Saint Preux in February, he secured sensational knockout wins against Misha Cirkunov and Jimi Manuwa. With Cormier in his sights, Oezdemir aims to become the first Swiss world champion in UFC history.
Additional bouts on the card include:
- Talented striker Gian Villante looks to return to the win column when he faces Francimar Barroso.
- In a thrilling battle of bantamweight contenders, No.10-ranked Thomas Almeida locks horns with No.14 Rob Font.
- No.10-ranked flyweight contender Dustin Ortiz takes on No.12 Alexandre Pantoja.
- In a clash of top featherweight prospects, Calvin Kattar meets undefeated Shane Burgos.
- Islam Makhachev aims to keep his momentum rolling when he squares off with lightweight veteran Gleison Tibau.
- No.15-ranked strawweight Maryna Moroz faces Jamie Moyle.
- Boston’s own Kyle Bochniak looks to blow the roof off TD Garden when he faces Brandon Davis.
UFC 220 will air live on pay-per-view at 10 p.m. ET/7 p.m. PT on Saturday, January 20, with the prelims kicking off the evening on FS1 at 8 p.m. ET/5 p.m. PT and on UFC FIGHT PASS® at 6:15 p.m. ET/3:15 p.m. PT.