While not the blockbuster, headline grabbing pay-per-view UFC has experienced so far in 2015, this weekend's UFC 185 is unbelievably stacked for casual fans of the sport. Two championship fights, another former world champion, two well-known heavyweights-- and that's just on the main card.
UFC 185 is headlined by Anthony "Showtime" Pettis, who will have his drawing power tested against Rafael dos Anjos, unknown to most casual fans. Dos Anjos is coming off of a dominant win over Nate Diaz and an upset knockout of Ben Henderson that finally garnered him some much-deserved recognition. He's won 8 of his last 9 fights, with his lone loss coming to the undefeated and currently injured Khabib Nurmagomedov.
Both men have shown an inability to stop the takedown at certain points, so it will be interesting to see if either of the two opt to take the fight there. Pettis has creative but effective striking thanks to his training at Roufusport, and will look to employ that during the fight. Dos Anjos is no slouch in the striking department, after knocking out former world champion Henderson, and leg kicking his way to a win over Diaz.
The championship fights don't stop there, however, as Women's Strawweight Champion Carla Esparza is set for her first title defense against undefeated Polish fighter Joanna Jedrzeczyk. Esparza has a distinct advantage in the wrestling game, as she does against almost everyone else in her division. Jedrzeczyk, however, has a pace unlike almost any competitor in the UFC, man or woman. She's coming off of three giant wins over Rosi Sexton, Juliana Lima and Claudia Gadelha, and is more than ready for the challenge.
Johny Hendricks is also back in action for the first time since losing his UFC Welterweight Championship, as he'll take on a fan-favorite in Matt Brown. Hendricks has kept himself in considerably better shape going into this fight, a stark contrast from the trend in which he's followed in the past. Brown will look to get back on track with a win, but has proven to be susceptible to the takedown. Hendricks likes to stand and trade punches, something that could prove to be his downfall against the resilient and range-y Brown.
In what will almost be a guaranteed knockout, top 10 heavyweights Alistair Overeem and Roy Nelson are set to square off. The two both need a win to get anywhere close to the title picture in the already thin UFC Heavyweight division. Nelson has looked nothing short of terrible in three of his last four fights, while Overeem could have been 5-1 in the UFC if not for his lack of heart and cardio. Instead, Overeem sits at 3-3, and is battling to keep himself relevant in the company.
Elsewhere on the show, former title challenger Chris Cariaso faces the daunting task of battling Olympic Gold Medalist Henry Cejudo. The Fight Pass Prelims are are also the most stacked they've been, featuring Anthony Pettis' brother Sergio, top-15 women's bantamweight fighter Germaine de Randamie, and Joseph Duffy, who is the last man to defeat superstar Conor McGregor.
Wrestling Inc has your full UFC 185 coverage, starting with the preliminary fights at 6:30 eastern time.