1. Where/When To Watch
UFC on FUEL TV 8: Silva vs. Stann takes place on March 2 at the Saitama Super Arena in Saitama, Japan. The preliminary card streams on Facebook, beginning at 7:30 p.m. ET. The Main Card goes live at 10 p.m. on FUEL TV.
2. Main Event fighters Brian Stann and Wanderlei Silva lost in their last bouts
Wanderlei Silva and Brian Stann, the main event fighters, lost in their last bouts. The former has won just three of his eight UFC fighters, while finishing his PRIDE career on back-to-back knockout losses. The Brazilian insists he is rejuvenated heading into his first bout of 2013. Stann, on the other hand, has been pedestrian in two of his last three bouts, though his knockout win against Alessio Sakara last April was a nice touch to the highlight reel.
3. Silva vs. Stann will be contested at light heavyweight, not middleweight
Both fighters have spent the majority of their time as of late fighting at the 185 lb. mark. The last time Silva fought at 205, "The Axe Murderer" was brutally knocked out by Quinton "Rampage" Jackson, his longtime rival, at UFC 92 over four years ago. He has jumped up in weight on two occasions for catchweight bouts against Rich Franklin, but Silva walked away empty-handed.
Stann, the former WEC light heavyweight champ, entered the UFC as a light heavyweight, but dropped to middleweight after a loss to Phil Davis at UFC 109 three years ago. He followed up the drop with three-straight wins but was recently boxed out of contention by Michael Bisping at UFC 152.
4. Struve, Hunt on four-fight and three fight winning streaks, respectively
Finally arrived in Japan, trying to stay up now :)
— Stefan Struve (@StefanStruve) February 26, 2013
Heavyweight Stefan Struve has been a monster as of late, winning four straight including a technical knockout win over Stipe Miocic, the clear favorite, in September of 2012. He also has the ability to stay busy, averaging three fights a year, which is terrific for a heavyweight.
But Struve could have his hands full in this one as Mark Hunt has rediscovered relevance, and his heavy hands. After losing six straight fights, including his UFC debut loss to Sean McCorkle, Hunt is 3-0. And during his 6-fight losing streak he fought a who's who of talent, including Fedor Emelianenko, Josh Barnett, and Alistair Overeem. However, in terms of his upcoming fight, a year will have passed since he entered the Octagon.
Also interesting note, Struve has 12 professional UFC fights. Hunt has three UFC fights and just over a year shy of 40. Struve is 25.
5. Sanchez has not finished a fight in five years; Gomi has gone to decision once in UFC
Diego Sanchez has not finished a fight in almost five years; he earned a TKO over Luigi Fioravanti. He's never finished a fight at lightweight. Still, Sanchez has won five Fight of the Night bonuses, including three straight heading into his contest opposite Takanori Gomi.
Gomi, meanwhile, is on a two-fight winning streak with a 3-3 overall UFC record. All three of those losses came via submission. His most recent pair of losses came against Nate Diaz, a BJJ specialist, and Clay Guida, who mirrors Sanchez's relentless pace. He's gone to decision once in six fights, meaning he's been stopped in all three losses.
6. Hector Lombard enters off brutal knockout of Rousimare Palhares to get back in the win column
Hector Lombard disappointed against Tim Boetsch in his debut at UFC 148, dropping a split-decision. He attempted to regain his status of an elite middleweight with a win over Rousimar Palhares. And that's exactly what he did, scoring a brutal first round knockout of the submission ace. The former Bellator middleweight champion has a history of doing that, including the fastest recorded knockout at Bellator 18.
7. Yushin Okami returns to Saitama for first time since shocking loss to Tim Boetsch
Yushin Okami may be closer than Lombard for a title shot against Anderson Silva had he not allowed Tim Boetsch to earn an incredible comeback at UFC 144. Since then, he is 2-0 with a victory over Alan Belcher at UFC 155 being his most recent. And he should be looking to make a better impression in front of the Japanese crowd as the Boetsch loss came in Saitama.
8. Siyar Bahadurzada is undefeated in the past four and a half years, six wins came via knockout
Siyar Bahadurzada is a scary guy to step in the cage with. In his UFC debut he knocked out Paulo Thiago in just 42 seconds, and, in his professional career, he's finished 15 guys in the first round.
Also he and his opponent have a common victim: the aforementioned Thiago. "Stun Gun" managed to take a decision win in that contest, but he lost two of three prior to the win. He also has finished just one opponent in a 10-fight UFC career.
9. Mizuto Hirota, a Strikeforce import, enters the UFC coming off a loss, but Yahya did so as well back in 2011
Mizuto Hirota debuts at UFC on FUELT TV 8 against WEC veteran Rani Yahya, but Hirota lost in his last contest, a lightweight bout against Pat Healy. However, he is fighting in his home country where he has competed often since his 2005 professional debut.
Like Hirota, Yahya also entered the UFC coming off a loss, to in fact. Another similarity is the fact that moved to featherweight. For what it's worth concerning Yahya, earned his first submission victory since 2009 when he disposed fallen prospect Josh Grispi in his last outing.
10. All six main card fights will be contested in different weight classes
Rarely does a UFC main card feature so much diversity in weight classes as all six main card fights will be contested at the six heaviest weight classes, from heavyweights Mark Hunt and Stefan Struve to featherweights Rani Yahya and Mizuto Hirota.
Meanwhile, two bantamweight fights take place on the preliminary card. A year ago, that would mean just one weight class, the flyweight class, was not represented. Now there's a second: the UFC women's bantamweight division.