Curtis Blaydes is just 27 years old, so to say his best days are ahead of him in MMA would be an understatement.
But Blaydes can take a giant step towards achieving his ultimate goal Saturday morning when he meets Francis Ngannou in the main event of UFC Fight Night 141.
First, Blaydes is given the chance to avenge his lone career defeat, which came to Ngannou back in 2016 when the doctor stepped in to stop the bout after the second round. A victory would also be his fifth in a row, adding the former title contender to a list that includes Alistair Overeem, Mark Hunt and Alexey Oleynik.
For Blaydes, this is all about proving himself on the big stage. He did that this past June when he finished Overeem in the third round with devastating elbows, and now he can do it again from Beijing, China live on UFC Fight Pass.
When the UFC gives you a main event billing, you have to take advantage of it. And while Blaydes is likely to be paired in such fights a lot more moving forward, you never want to give them a reason to drop you down the pecking order.
Look for “Razor” to impose his will and use all his striking skills to gain a measure of revenge and cement his standing in the UFC’s heavyweight division with a finish over Ngannou.
UFC Fight Night 141 Fight Card
MAIN CARD (UFC Fight Pass/6:30 a.m. ET)
Heavyweight: Curtis Blaydes vs. Francis Ngannou
Heavyweight: Alistair Overeem vs. Sergey Pavlovich
Bantamweight: Song Yadong vs. Vince Morales
Welterweight: Li Jingliang vs. David Zawada
PRELIMINARY CARD (UFC Fight Pass/3:15 a.m. ET)
Welterweight: Kenan Song vs. Alex Morono
Female Flyweight: Wu Yanan vs. Lauren Mueller
Heavyweight: Hu Yaozong vs. Rashad Coulter
Strawweight: Jessica Aguilar vs. Weili Zhang
Strawweight: Xiaonan Yan vs. Syuri Kondo
Middleweight: Kevin Holland vs. John Philips
Bantamweight: Su Mudaerji vs. Louis Smolka