UFC 262 Brings Fighting to Houston This Weekend


(Courtesy Wikimedia Commons)

By Aria Fatahian, Sports Writer


For the first time in over three years there will finally be a new lightweight champion not named Khabib Nurmagomedov. UFC 262’s main event will feature a bout between Charles Oliveira and Michael Chandler for the lightweight title. UFC 262 will also be held in front of a full capacity crowd at the Toyota Center in Houston on Saturday, May 15.

The Fights

UFC 262’s main card will feature five fights and one title fight. However, all talk is about the main event and co-main event. In the main event we have a fight between No. 3 ranked contender Oliveira and No. 4 ranked contender Chandler for the vacant lightweight title. For over three years no one has come close to dethroning Khabib as the lightweight champion, but now two of the UFC’s best lightweights will be fighting to take the throne and become the new king. Both Oliveira and Chandler are coming off impressive victories. Oliveira recently just dominated and beat Tony Ferguson, while Chandler had a brutal knockout win against Dan Hooker. Both competitors have earned the right to be in this title bout and it should be a fun fight to watch.

Staying in the lightweight division, the co-main event will be a lightweight bout between No. 5 ranked Tony Ferguson and No. 9 ranked Beneil Dariush. This fight should be a slug fest as Ferguson has been one of the most dominating lightweights in UFC history and Dariush is currently on a six-fight winning streak.

The Odds

In the main event, Oliveira will open as the slight favorite at -130 while Chandler will open as the slight underdog at +110. Both fighters have won their last three fights; however, this is only Chandler’s second time in his career fighting in the UFC and people doubt if he can finish off veteran Olivera. Don’t let that fool you, as Chandler was the former Bellator champ and could possibly upset Olivera this Saturday.

In the co-main event, Dariush will open as the slight favorite at -165 while Ferguson opens as the underdog at +140. This fight really could go either way, but Dariush is on a six-fight winning streak and has finished almost all of his opponents during that streak, while Ferguson is currently on a two fight losing streak. Still, Ferguson is one of the best lightweights in the UFC and is looking to make a statement during UFC 262.

The “Missing” Fight

UFC 262 was supposed to feature the long-awaited return of Nate Diaz versus the No. 3 ranked welterweight, Leon Edwards. However, due to an undisclosed injury the fight was rescheduled to June for UFC 263. This fight came as a blow to the UFC as it had more hype than the actual title fight and a lot of people excited to see if Nate Diaz still has the fighting spirit within him. Regardless, UFC 262 should still be a fantastic card and fans should not be disappointed.

What’s at Stake

For both Oliveira and Chandler, this fight will determine who really runs the lightweight division. After this fight, the winner of will most likely go on to defend the belt against the winner of Dustin Poirier vs Conor McGregor (3). A win this Saturday for either contender could prove that they can hang with the “big dogs” and that they belong alongside the former champions. Ultimately, the winner of this fight will have bragging rights and can silence all the critics and haters, and most importantly, they will take the throne from retired lightweight Khabib.

In addition, this event could possibly be Ferguson’s last chance to go on a title run. Before 2020 Tony was 15-1 in the UFC and even became interim lightweight champion while going on a 12-fight winning streak. However, that streak came to an end when he lost in early 2020 to Justin Gaethje and then to Oliveira shortly after. Due to his recent losses, people fear that Ferguson’s time has to come an end and that he is no longer championship worthy. This fight with Dariush is ultimately his last chance to prove that he still has what it takes to be a champion.

Other Notable Fights

Some other notable fights to look out for this Saturday are Katlyn Chookagian versus Viviane Araujo and Shane Burgos versus Edson Barboza. And a “sleeper” fight to watch out for is the prelim bout Andrea Lee vs. Antonina Shevchenko. For a full list of fights click here.

How to Watch

UFC 262 will be taking place at the Toyota Center in front of a sold crowd of 18,000+ in Houston. For those not in attendance you can watch UFC 262 exclusively through pay-per-view. The prelims and early prelims can be watched on ESPN/ESPN+ and UFC fight pass.


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