UFC Fight Night 61 goes down on February 22nd from Porto Alegre, Brazil. Headlined by veteran heavyweights Antonio “Bigfoot” Silva and Frank Mir, we preview the night’s main card fighters.
“Bigfoot” Silva vs. Frank Mir
Antonio “Bigfoot” Silva (18-6-1) is a former Strikeforce fighter who hardly needs any introduction. Winning 13 of his 18 professional victories by knockout, “Bigfoot” is known for his relentlessly heavy hands. He faces former UFC heavyweight champion Frank Mir (16-9) in the main event. Mir is known for having some of the best smarts in the division when it comes to the ground game. Both “Bigfoot” and Mir have had hard luck in their last string of fights and will be extremely competitive for a win to set their records back on course.
Edson Barboza vs. Michael Johnson
At lightweight, Edson Barboza (15-2) faces Michael Johnson (15-8). Barboza has very sharp striking skills (see wheel kick KO) forged in his kickboxing career. Michael Johnson (15-8) most recently snapped a 2-fight skid with 3 consecutive wins over veterans Lauzon, Tibau and Guillard heading into Fight Night 61. Expect to see a very expert striking battle out of this fight.
Cezar Ferreira vs. Sam Alvey
Cezar Ferreira (8-3) is a Brazilian fighting Sam Alvey (24-6-1) at middleweight. Ferreira is a TUF Middleweight winner going 4-1 in the UFC. Sam Alvey is a former MFC middleweight champion going 5-1 in his last 6 fights. After a unanimous decision loss to Tom Watson in his UFC debut, he most recently rebounded with a 1st round KO win over Dylan Andrews at Fight Night 55.
Rustam Khabilov vs. Adriano Martins
Rustam Khabilov (17-2) meets Adriano Martins (26-7) in the second lightweight bout of the main card. Khabilov is a former M-1 fighter going 2-1 in the UFC. Khabilov’s Sambo world champion expertise will be an exciting dynamic against Martins’ BJJ Black Belt expertise. Martins, however, has earned 12 of his 26 victories by KO. He joins the other Brazilian fighters on the main card competing in his home country.
Iuri Alcântara vs. Frankie Saenz
At bantamweight, Iuri Alcântara (31-5) faces Frankie Saenz (9-2). Alcântara is by far the more experienced fighter, taking his last 3 fights after a decision loss to Urijah Faber in 2013. Saenz is riding a 5-fight winning streak heading into UFC Fight Night 61, taking his UFC debut over Nolan Ticman by unanimous decision.
Santiago Ponzinibbio vs. Sean Strickland
Santiago Ponzinibbio (19-2) meets former King of the cage middleweight champion Sean Strickland (15-0) at welterweight to round out the final main card bout. Ponzinibbio is 1-1 in the UFC, coming off a KO victory over Wendell de Oliveira Marques. Strickland has maintained a perfect professional record over 15 fights and has gone 2-0 in the UFC.
Catch UFC Fight Night 61 on February 22nd at 8/5 ETPT on Fox Sports 1 to see the main card in action.