It’s back to the red corner for today’s matchup in our BE’s BADDEST Tournament Series to figure out what is the single Greatest MMA Fight Of All Time — that one to watch before the world ends. Today’s battle involves the #2 ranked, Israel Adesanya vs. Kelvin Gastelum, colliding with the #7 seed, T.J. Dillashaw vs. Dominick Cruz.
In yesterday’s tournament matchup, the blue corner’s #1 seed, Dan Henderson vs. Mauricio Shogun Rua 1 annihilated the #8 ranked Mauricio Shogun Rua vs. Little Nog 1 by a score of 30-1. Hendo vs. Shogun 1 will now advance to face the winner of the upcoming #2 seed Frankie Edgar vs. Gray Maynard 2 against the #7 ranked, Paulo Costa vs. Yoel Romero.
Both of today’s bouts were high stakes five-round decisions. One was for the UFC’s interim middleweight title, and the other was for the UFC bantamweight belt.
Israel Adesanya vs. Kelvin Gastelum went down at UFC 236 in Atlanta, Georgia back in 2019, with the promotion’s interim middleweight title up for grabs. Gastelum went right at Izzy, throwing hard combos in the pocket. Adesanya recovered from being rocked to get the fight back on his side, and managed to drop Gastelum a bunch of times in the final round of the war. All of the toughness was in this fight!
T.J. Dillashaw vs. Dominick Cruz took place at UFC Boston back in January of 2016 and was for the promotion’s bantamweight championship. Both men showcased top shelf technique in terms of striking, grappling, and footwork — and they both had the athleticism to stay after it until the fifth and final bell.
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Tournament bracket (click to enlarge):