Conor McGregor with his 2 Cage Warrior belts. Image: Dolly Clew/Cage Warriors

Uncaged: Forget March Madness, it’s Awesome April in the UFC

We’ve got all the MMA news in an arm-lock. Tap, tap, tap!

IT HAS BEEN a quiet couple of weeks action-wise in the UFC but with four events in the next four weeks it’s about to get very rowdy.

It promises to be a watershed moment in Irish MMA also as Conor McGregor and Norman Parke get set to do battle raising the profile of Irish fighters on the biggest stage of all. As well as this, a number of former Strikeforce champs will be making their debuts in the promotion and a fantastic four weeks of fighting culminates in the long awaited matchup between Jon Jones and Chael Sonnen for the light heavyweight crown.

A look through the cards

Sweden is the first port of call for the UFC in April and while all Irish eyes will be focussed on the undercard bout of Conor McGregor and Marcus Brimage, the main event should be a cracker.

Alexander Gustafsson takes on Gegard Mousasi in his own back garden in a fight that could help determine the next possible opponent for the all-conquering Jon Jones. Mousasi is a former Strikeforce champion while Gustafsson’s stock is rapidly rising in the UFC and both men’s styles means this could be an exciting wherever the fight ends up.

YouTube credit: Artkor

Brad Pickett versus Mike Easton and Diego Brandao versus Pablo Garza are the other two stand-out fights on the card but hopefully all the headlines from this event will be about a spectacular debut for Conor McGregor.

Next up is the finale of this season’s “The Ultimate Fighter” where we get the usual mix of some UFC headliner bouts coupled with fighters from the series trying to get that lucrative contract. Urijah Faber and Scott Jorgensen provide some bantamweight action to top the card off while Miesha Tate and Cat Zingano do battle to see who gets the honour of coaching against Ronda Rousey in the next TUF series.

California Dreaming

The UFC steam-train then moves onto California and all eyes will be on the preliminary card once again as Antrim’s Norman Parke gets set to go toe-to-toe with Jon Tuck. Tuck is unbeaten in his pro MMA career but Parke has a lot of experience for a man of his age and hopefully will provide us with plenty to cheer about after his fight.

Former Strikeforce lightweight champion Gilbert Melendez makes his long-awaited UFC debut on the same card and walks straight into a championship fight against Ben Henderson. Frank Mir is in action against a possible future heavyweight contender in Daniel Cormier while the rest of the card is so stacked the likes of Joseph Benavidez and Chad Mendes couldn’t make it onto the main card.

YouTube credit: LayzieTheSavage

The final event of “Awesome April” is definitely one worth waiting for as Chael Sonnen and Jon Jones finally get to throw down. Any fight with either of these men involved promises to be unmissable but with all the build-up throughout the series, this fight has an added edge to it.

The likes of Michael Bisping, Roy Nelson and Phil Davis are also fighting on this card but in reality they will all be playing second fiddle to the main event and what a fitting main event it promises to be bringing down the curtain on one of the most action-packed months in UFC history.

YouTube credit: NickTheFace2

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