This Saturday, former UFC heavyweight champion Fabrício Werdum (23-7-1 MMA, 11-4 UFC) takes on former Bellator heavyweight champion Alexander Volkov (29-6 MMA, 3-0 UFC) in London, England.
As things stand, former or reigning Bellator champions have a combined record of 3 wins and 6 losses when going up against former or reigning UFC champions.
Whilst this main event might not appeal to U.K. fans quite as much as either Michael Bisping’s retirement fight or the next big test for Darren Till (options that were rumored when this event was first announced), it’s still an important heavyweight bout containing one of the greatest fighters in the division’s history.
Let’s take a look at the recent results of the two men in Saturday night’s main event:
Werdum suffered a close majority decision loss to Alistair Overeem last July, a decision which 7 out of 16 polled media members disagreed with. He rebounded with 2 wins in the span of just 44 days, defeating Walt Harris via first-round submission and Marcin Tybura in a five-round decision.
Volkov made his UFC debut with a controversial split decision win over Timothy Johnson, a decision which 12 out of 12 polled media members disagreed with. Volkov followed this result with a clear unanimous decision win over Roy Nelson and an impressive third-round TKO over Stefan Struve.
Here’s a look at how these two fighters fared when competing against common opponents shared throughout their careers. On the left of the graphic, you’ll see how Werdum fared against any shared opponents and on the right, you’ll see Volkov’s results against the same men.
The two men share just one common opponent; Roy Nelson. Werdum scored a one-sided unanimous decision victory over Nelson in February 2012, whilst Volkov recorded the same result over 5 years later.
The Dwyer Score
Each event, I calculate a ‘Dwyer Score’ for the card. It essentially gives a numeric value to the momentum of fighters competing at any one event. I do this by assigning a figure to each fighter’s current streak; a fighter on a five-fight winning streak contributes +5 to an event’s score, whilst a fighter on a two-fight losing streak contributes -2 to the score. A fighter coming off a No Contest, a draw, or a bout with another promotion has a streak of 0, and only UFC results are considered. When you tally up the scores for every fighter on a card, you get a total for the event- the ‘Dwyer Score.’ This score does not claim to predict or measure the quality or excitement of any one card, but it does give you an idea of the general momentum of fighters heading into a specific event. The graphic to the above-right displays some of the highest-scoring events of all time, to help give some context to this score.
UFC Fight Night 127: Werdum vs. Volkov checks in with a decent score of +7.
This score ranks joint-22nd of 41 events in the last year and joint-8th of 21 Fight Night events in the same period.
Here’s a look at how this score compares to other events’ scores over the past year:
As you can see, this score is significantly above the +2.2 average for Fight Nights in the last 12 months, though it does fall short of the +10.6 average for all events in the same time frame.
Let’s take a look at exactly how this score breaks down:
The highest individual contributor to the score is Leon Edwards (+4), just ahead of Alexander Volkov and Kajan Johnson (both +3).
The lowest individual scorers are Terrion Ware and Paul Craig (both -2), whilst six fighters are making their promotional debuts at this event.
Enjoy the fights!