UFC 161 takes place this Saturday, June 15th, from the MTS Centre in Winnipeg, Manitoba,Canada. The preliminary action kicks off at 7 pm ET on Facebook, followed by more prelims at 8 on FX, and then finally with the main card fights at 10 on pay-per-view.
2) It's been a rough road leading up to the card
To say this card has been plagued would be an understatement. Along with Isaac Vallie-Flagg and TJ Waldburger, Antônio Rogério Nogueira and main eventer/interim bantamweight champion Renan Barao were both forced to withdraw from their highly touted contests with ShogunRua and Eddie Wineland, respectively.
3) Rashad Evans loves fighting in the limelight
Simply put, when Rashad is in the main event of a UFC card he's damn near unbeatable at 9-2, with his lone losses being to Jon Jones and Lyoto Machida. On the other end of the spectrum, Henderson is 2-2 when put in the same situation.
4) "Suga" is the light-heavyweight takedown king
Leading into this fight, Evans stated he was going to going to attampt to take down Henderson 30 times. That's quite a bold statmeent considering his opponent's Olympic wrestling credentials. However when you consider that Rashad is the all-time takedown leader in light-heavyweight history(49) it doesn't seem to farfetched.
5) Dan Henderson can chalk up another champion
Carlos Newtown. Big Nog. Murilo Bustamante.Vitor Belfort. Wanderlei Silva.Rich Franklin. Renato Sobral. Rafael Cavalcante. Fedor. Shogun. What do all these men have in common? At some point in time, all 10 men were either a UFC, Pride, or Strikeforce champion. Another thing they all have in common? They have all been bested by Dan Henderson. If Hendo can defeat Evans on Saturday he can make that number 11.
"Big Country" has fought 9 times in the UFC, with a record of 6-3. Of those 6 victories, Nelson is 100% in turning the lights out on his opponent. Currently the bearded behemoth is on a 3-fight win streak, with his most recent being a colossus KO against Cheick Kongo.
7) Ryan Jimmo is nearly perfect when fighting under the maple leaf
It must be all the Canadian bacon and maple syrup, because "The Big Deal" is 17-1 when he fights in his home country. He is also coming off his first career loss since his professional debut back in 2007.
8) The laddies will be throwing down
For the second time in in UFC history, women's MMA will take place on a main card pay-per-view slot slot as highly regarded fighters Rosi Sexton and Alexis Davis will meet. The two will also become the first international women to step foot into the octagon, as Sexton is from Engalnd, while Davis is Canadien.
9) For better or worse, Pat Barry is usually involved in a bonus award
If you can't call Pat Barry one thing, it's boring. Whether it be a win or a loss, his last 5 fights have received the "Knockout of the Night," "Submission of the Night," or "Fight of the Night" bonus. In Barry's UFC career he's picked up a grand total of 2 Fight of the Night awards and 2 Knockout of the Night awards.
10) Jake Shields returns to welterweight
Grappling wiz Jake Shields will return to the division that he made his name in against Tyron Woodley on Saturday night. In his last bout, Shields moved up to middleweight to defeat Ed Herman at UFC 150. However, the bout was later overturned when it was revealed that Shields had failed a post fight drug test. It's not all bad news for "Scrap Pack" member as the welterweight division is were he has defeated the likes Carlos Condit, Robbie Lawler, and Martin Kampmann.