It seems strange to describe the heavyweight division with the word ‘quietly’. You of course have the biggest, hardest hitting competitors in that division. However, in recent years it has moved into the background slightly. Conor McGregor, a featherweight, has emerged as the sport’s most recognizable star.
The most identifiable champions of recent years have been people like Robbie Lawler; Georges St-Pierre; Jon Jones and Daniel Cormier. Or in the women’s division: Ronda Rousey, Miesha Tate and Holly Holm. In this period the heavyweights faded into the background somewhat, they did not have the star power to compete for the spotlight.
This situation has begun to change. The heavyweight championship picture is looking seriously exciting at the moment. Stipe Miocic winning the belt in dramatic fashion shuffled things around considerably.
UFC 203 in Cleveland injected the division with even more excitement. Fabricio Werdum made a stunning comeback with a unanimous decision victory over Travis Browne. In his first fight back after losing the belt, Werdum stormed out of the gates at the sound of the bell. He leapt across the octagon with a flying sidekick that landed flush.
Things got spicier still for the heavyweight division post-fight. One of many controversial moments from that card involved Browne’s coach squaring up to Werdum and getting a front kick for his troubles.
The main event of that card saw Miocic successfully defend his title on home turf. The UFC threw the new champion a tough challenge for his first defence in Alistair Overeem. The Dutch fighter is one of the most formidable and decorated heavyweights in history. Miocic knocked Overeem out in the first round, cementing his position of dominance over the division.
Miocic is evolving into a big star, he has a great screen presence. In addition to this he is an inspiration figure. When he isn’t fighting in the cage he is fighting fires. He is also just a really nice guy, a family man.
The question is: who should get the next shot at the heavyweight championship? An upcoming bout could bring the answer. At UFC 207 in December, Fabricio Werdum and Cain Velasquez will throwdown once again. This is quite obviously a title eliminator, with the winner taking on the champion in the future.
As if we haven’t been treat to enough great cards recently, UFC 207 is really shaping up. As well as the aforementioned clash, Anthony Johnson faces light heavyweight champion Daniel Cormier. Superman punch that subscribe button for more combat sports and entertainment news!