UFC Norfolk: Ion Cutelaba vs Magomed Ankalaev: A Light-Heavyweight Fight Of Old
By James Lee
As UFC Norfolk draws closer, all attention is on the fight between Joseph Benavidez and Deiveson Figueiredo that will clear up the flyweight confusion.
In a heavier weight class though, either Ion Cutelaba and Magomed Ankalaev look likely for a performance bonus, although it is unlikely the contest will last long enough to win the fight of the night honour.
As the light-heavyweight division features an ever-changing roundabout of contenders who can’t quite grasp championship ambition, its once prestige has mostly dissolved.
Back in the 2000’s, the division was the sport’s most exciting. In comparison to the days when Chuck Liddell and Tito Ortiz built the sport, the 205 lbs fighters don’t quite have the same mystique as of yet.
Jon Jones’ reign has held a tight grip of the division and oddly, the fight in Norfolk could be deemed a fight of the past. As the sport was growing, the pair would have likely been at the top, but they offer something slightly different in the modern day; excitement and a guarantee of a finish which few can these days.
Ankalaev or Cutelaba are still unlikely to reach the sport’s top in the near future as their fighting styles couldn’t allow it. As the Moldovan Hulk does little but continuously progress forward with power, consistency can rarely be achieved at that rate. His Russian counterpart is slightly more preserved, but not much more. As flashiness is usually preserved for the smaller weight classes, Ankalaev instead uses it to finish; much like he did in two of his UFC fights previously.
As ever, excitement sells. Even more than skill sometimes. As Benavidez and Figuerdo are likely to showcase some of the best skill of the year, Cutelaba or Ankalaev’s antics are sure to surpass that however in a main card fight that cannot be missed.