Date: Sunday 10th December, 3am (UK)
Location: California, US
Venue: Save Mart Center
The UFC makes its first visit to Fresno with two thrilling featherweights headlining the card. Cub Swanson was very disappointed not to get asked to fill in for Frankie Edgar at UFC 218 after he pulled out of his title fight with Max Holloway. Instead, José Aldo was awarded a rematch which ended just like their first encounter - brutally. Thus, Holloway is sitting smug at the top of the division and a win for either of these men could queue them up right behind Edgar in contention for a shot at the champion.
Swanson is enjoying a resurgence in his career with vintage swashbuckling performances, earning four straight wins including the 2016 ‘Fight of the Year’ against Doo Ho Choi. He faces fellow Californian Brian Ortega who has looked on form for his entire professional career. He is undefeated and has looked exceptional with elite grappling skills and evolving stand-up skills.
Although Ortega is as slick as they come on the ground, Swanson is a crafty veteran with black belts in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu and Judo but does not hide the fact he is most comfortable slugging it out on the feet with a suffocating output. So, the key stat is the amount of strikes absorbed per minute – can Ortega avoid the onslaught and inflict his own? See below for the statistical breakdown:
Striking and grappling stats sourced via FightMetric.