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Boxing and MMA fans are looking forward to an action-packed year. Fights are being organized and arranged and rearranged by the demands of the promoters and even the fighters themselves. Usually treated to a couple of headline events each year, fans would have been disappointed last year, as the effects of Coronavirus and the restrictions involved trundled on throughout the year.
Big fights affected included the world title fight between Anthony Joshua and Kubrat Pulev, scheduled to take place in June 2020. This was a highly anticipated fight, with the original match supposed to take place in 2017 canceled due to an injury to Pulev. Coronavirus saw the tie postponed, although they did finally manage to fight in December 2020 with Joshua emerging victorious.
UFC 249 was postponed, changing dates from April to May and even a switch of venue. The original headline fight was to be champion Khabib Nurmagomedev fighting Tony Ferguson, former interim champion. However, restrictions on travel meant that Khabib, who was in Dagestan, could not get to the U.S. to take part. Justin Gaethje was lined up to take his place, which would deal a big blow to Ferguson’s hopes of a title shot as he was knocked out in the fifth round. Gaethje performed admirably to earn a fight against Khabib.
Floyd Mayweather Vs Logan Paul
Scheduled to take place in June, this monster money-making match has intrigued and annoyed boxing fans in equal measure. Mayweather being an undefeated boxing legend fighting against a Youtube personality who has only ever fought one boxing match. Fans expect a procession to victory for Mayweather yet the danger of losing is always there. As it is an exhibition match, it would not go on Mayweather’s record but seriously dent his big ego.
A fight purse of millions of dollars may help soften that blow if it were to occur. With the nickname ‘Money Mayweather”, he has made huge figures through his boxing career. He is also quite fond of betting on sports and notoriously got a friend to bet on him to beat Conor Mcgregor as he was not allowed to himself. Against Logan Paul, it’s worth looking at the online betting site casinot for the best odds on offer for this blockbuster fight.
Dustin Poirier Vs Conor Mcgregor
The trilogy fight between these two superstars has been given the go-ahead for July. Inseparable at the bookmakers, it will be a fascinating fight as McGregor aims to avenge his defeat this year. Beating Poirier easily and quickly in their first fight in 2014, not many expected him to trouble McGregor too much in what was to be his comeback fight in UFC. Yet fans were stunned, as Poirier handed McGregor his first TKO loss in a long career of fighting.
A rematch was touted straight away as the setback to Conor’s career became apparent. People were seeing him as yesterday’s man but the desire to compete at the very top still burns deep inside him. He is training hard for this fight and it’s hard to say what another defeat to Poirier would do to his confidence. This is an eagerly anticipated tie and will probably be one of the biggest pay-per-view events in UFC history.
Tyson Fury Vs Anthony Joshua
It’s fair to say the boxing world cannot wait for this one. Massively hyped due to the fact both are British fighters and between them are in possession of all boxing’s major heavyweight belts. The winner will be the first undisputed champion of the heavyweight class since 2000, with legend Lennox Lewis holding that honor. Scheduled to take place in August in Saudi Arabia, the victor of this bout will receive widespread acclaim from the world of boxing fans, assured of legendary status.
While Joshua is seen as a straight arrow, Fury has a bit of a checkered past. More so to do with his personal life than boxing, his extraordinary comeback and determination to win has won over many fans. He has battled many demons to get where he is now. Favorite at bookmakers to win the fight, due to his outstanding victory against Deontay Wilder, it is a tough match to call. Fury remains undefeated, Joshua has only lost one fight in his career and both remain hugely popular with the people.
Could We be so Lucky?
Another mega-fight that was on the cards for this year seems to have lost a bit of momentum, but there is still time. Bringing together two legends of fighting, Manny Pacquiao and Conor McGregor, to do battle in the boxing ring. While Conor is a UFC fighter, he has previous experience at changing sports, fighting, and losing to Floyd Mayweather in 2017. Pacquiao, having also lost to Mayweather, was fascinated by this encounter.
Now a senator in the Philippines and 42 years old, it is unsurprising that Pacquiao has slowed down the number of fights he takes part in. Yet interest in the match remains so high, it was rumored to be taking place in the Middle East with a huge purse on offer. Pacquiao announced his earnings would be distributed to the people of the Philippines affected by the spread of Coronavirus. Yet McGregor’s loss to Poirier has seen all discussions of this super fight come to a standstill.
With vaccines becoming available and many people feeling that the worst is over, sport is hoping to get back on track unabated this year. With limited numbers of fans at events and the UFC traveling as far as Abu Dhabi to compete at a newly constructed stadium to keep the entertainment going, hopes are high that things will be back to normal soon. With the list of upcoming fights mentioned, let’s hope they get all the fans, glamour, and attention that they deserve.
While some fighting fans fall into one camp of preferring boxing or UFC, it’s fair to say both have provided many memorable encounters over the years. Most people like to watch these fights in bars, where the atmosphere makes it much more exciting. If you have a connection to the internet, you can enjoy playing slots online to take your mind off things if the fight isn’t going the way you thought it would. Aside from when Floyd Mayweather is fighting, matches are usually hard to predict!
Roberto Villa is the CEO, Executive Writer, Senior Editor of FightBook MMA. Has a passion for Combat Sports and also a podcast host for Sitting Ringside. He’s also a former MMA fighter and Kickboxer.
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