In just a few hours, UFC Fight Night 101 will go down in Melbourne, Australia. It’s a card that underwent a reconstruction when the originally scheduled main event, a title eliminator bout between Luke Rockhold and Jacare Souza, was canceled following a knee injury sustained by Rockhold.
The featured co-main event, another middleweight bout featuring Top 10 contenders Derek Brunson and Robert Whittaker, would move into the headlining spot. The bout isn’t a title eliminator, however, the winner could very well find himself in a position to join the upper echelon of contenders that are just one fight away from a crack at the belt.
In a recent interview with Bloody Elbow’s Three Amigos Podcast (available this coming Tuesday), Rockhold gave a brief breakdown of the fight and its implications to the division.
“It’s an interesting fight. Both guys are kind of climbing their way up, and one of them will be putting themselves up into that next range of contenders, that next level. They’ll be in the elite class.
Whittaker seems to have a little sharper, a little better technique on the feet. Brunson is just such an athletic guy. He’s a pretty good striker and a good wrestler.
They’re both raw, though, and they both have holes in their game, but I think they match up well together, stylistically. It’s going to be a fun fight with plenty of back and forth action. I’m very curious to see who bumps up, to see who wants to come get it. I’d be hard pressed to pick a winner here, to be honest.”
UFC Fight Night 101: Whittaker vs. Brunson kicks off at 6:30 pm EST tonight on FightPass.