Tomorrow night in Manchester, England, MMA veterans Vitor Belfort and Gegard Mousasi will step into the Octagon in the co-main event of UFC 204.
Interestingly enough, while this is the first time the pair will step into the cage together, it isn’t the first time they have been booked to fight. Back in 2009, Affliction planned on hosting their third fight card, which was planned to play host to a scrap between Mousasi and Belfort, however the fight card was ultimately cancelled, and the promotion folded.
Now, seven years later, the men are once again set to clash. This time, Mousasi will be looking to build on his two-fight win streak that most recently saw him KO Thiago Santos on the preliminary card of UFC 200. On the other hand, Belfort will be looking to return to the win column after being TKOd by Jacare Souza on the main card of UFC 198 back in May.
Ahead of the fight, MMA icon Bas Rutten spoke on BJPenn.com Radio to give his prediction for the fight:
“You know, Vitor is super fast. But, what people don’t realize is that Mousasi is a real animal. This guy..if he let’s go what he can do, he’s up there with the K-1 fighters. Because that’s where he trains. He trains with all these top fighters in Holland, so his striking is really good, but sometimes he has bad luck. Things happen. Some fighters simply have that. I know more guys who I thought, ‘Oh they’re going to be a world champion within a year,’ and then suddenly something happens on the way. You know that last time when he got knocked out with that back kick [against Uriah Hall]? He was leaning to the side, and he leaned into the back kick. I mean who would’ve known? If he wouldn’t have leaned to the side, it would have been a miss. But for some reason, he leaned into that kick and then he goes down.
“If he (Mousasi) just does not care, and let’s it go. he could be a big problem for Vitor Belfort. Now Vitor Belfort’s speed is still there, and it’s very hard to beat speed. Speed most of the time wins. But, on the other side, combinations with determination – that can do a real good thing as well.”
“It going to be a very tough fight. This fight, I could never call it. If I put money on this fight, I would say ‘Ahh…this one I’m not going to gamble.’ It could go 50/50.”
How do you see the fight swinging PENN Nation? Give us your prediction for tomorrow night’s co-main event below!