UFC: 5 Fights That Need To Happen In 2021

UFC kicked off 2021 in style with UFC 257: Conor McGregor vs Dustin Poirier. But is natural to look ahead to what’s next and what’s bigger for the upcoming year, read on for a look at the five biggest fights Dana White could sanction inside the octagon this year.

Jorge Masvidal vs Colby Covington

The UFC is a promotion of three categories: Those who talk a lot, those who fight a lot, and those who do both.

Names like Conor McGregor and Jon Jones have ascended the ranks as big money fighters because of their ability to hype the fight and deliver on the hype.

Jorge Masvidal and Colby Covington both share this in common, for better or indeed for worse they are two of the most talkative fighters in the promotion and they look dead set for a clash in 2021.

The BMF champion and Covington have both challenged unsuccessfully for Kamaru Usman’s Welterweight Title and make sense to challenge each other for the right at another bite of the cherry.

Valentina Shevchenko vs Amanda Nunes 3

UFC 2021
Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC/Getty Images

Both Nunes and Shevchenko have dominated in their respective reigns. Nunes is a machine at featherweight and bantamweight and Shevchenko remains untouchable at flyweight.

They both appear to have a slowing conveyor belt of challengers and have both been the only fighters capable of holding a candle to each other during their 2017 clash where Nunes walked out with a split-decision win, although fans have disputed that Shevchenko should have won the judge score.

Both ladies have transcended since and as such it would be stupid to ignore the magnitude of a trilogy fight to potentially determine the GOAT of women’s MMA.

Conor McGregor vs Nate Diaz 3

UFC 2021
Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC/Getty Images

There are some who think McGregor is done. But I think that the one-time GOAT should have one more last fight before he walks out of the sport.

The two talkative fighters are tied 1-1 following two very entertaining clashes and considering McGregor’s frankly limited time left in the sport, their rubber match could be the last big-money fight left for the Irishman.

Diaz hasn’t fought since his loss against Masvidal and despite being an established fighter, hasn’t got a clear cut plan for the future. The fact that both fighters are in the twilight of their careers means that for both men, this could well be the last chapter written in both men’s careers.

Jon Jones vs Miocic/Ngannou

UFC 2021
Michael Wyke/Associated Press

Jon Jones vacated his Light Heavyweight Championship last year with plans to make the move up to heavyweight, and considering he carries the name of one of the best fighters in the UFC of all-time, has to be destined for a big money fight with the top champion.

Ariel Helwani of ESPN has reported that the UFC is hoping to pit Jones against the winner of the upcoming Heavyweight Title clash between Francis Ngannou and champion Stipe Miocic.

Either fight has considerable value and awe, with Miocic and Jones both sharing the only losses Daniel Cormier has ever suffered in the octagon. Whereas a fight with Ngannou would be seeing the untouchable Jones clashing against the most devastating puncher in the promotion.

Jones has said he is ready for both fights in an interview with Bleacher Report:

“Both fights are extremely challenging. Stipe, he’s the greatest heavyweight of all time. He has all the stats and records to prove that. And then Francis is just a freak when it comes to his knockout power, and he’s improving constantly.”

“Both fights are gigantic challenges, but that’s what I’m here for in this stage of my career: to go big and see what I’ve got.”

Jon Jones vs Israel Adesanya

UFC 2021
Photo by Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC

Jones is a man with options this year, does he battle for the Heavyweight crown or defend against a new invader in his division?

UFC Middleweight Champion Israel Adesanya, like Jones, has been unbeatable in his division and looks forward to the jump up to Lightweight where he’s expected to challenge for the gold.

Jones and Adesanya have an extensive history of back-and-forth on social media and it would seem a case of the stars never aligning for the clash, since it would be revealed after Jones’ vacation of the crown that Adesanya would bid for a second belt against Jan Blachowicz.

Jones has said before that he has no intentions of returning to light heavyweight. But it has to be considered that if Adesanya emerges as the new top dog then the allure of deciding the LHW GOAT will force him to reconsider. Even without that, Adesanya has said he would be willing to move all the way up to heavyweight to clash with Jones.

Dana White has even tipped the fight as his most must-see this year in an interview with Aaron Bronster.

This fight for the moment doesn’t seem likely to happen this year if at all, but if I was part of the matchmaking team with UFC, I would be crawling through glass to make this a possibility.

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