According to a Nov. 8 report from MMA Weekly, all the results are in from the UFC Fight Night 56 fight card that emanated from Ginasio Municipal Tancredo Neves in Uberlandia, Brazil. With highly-ranked striker, Ovince Saint Preux, stepping up on short notice to take on Brazilian legend, Mauricio Rua, the storylines were thick for UFC Fight Night 56 main event.
Unfortunately, the UFC Fight Night 56 co-main was cancelled, as Ian McCall went down with an illness just hours before his fight with John Lineker was expected to go down. No word yet from the UFC, but there’s a good chance a rematch will be set for sometime in the near future. McCall has been trying to get back into title contention at flyweight for quite some time, and Lineker would have made for a solid test.
In the UFC Fight Night 56 main event, there’s plenty on the line as far as title implications are concerned. Rua, 32, was originally slated to fight Jimi Manuwa at UFC Fight Night 56, but Saint Preux jumped in as a late replacement. Will he be able to capitalize on the opportunity, in order to cement himself as a legitimate light heavyweight title contender? That’s the question fight fans have been asking all week, and the only way to find out is by tuning in to FOX Sports 1 for the UFC Fight Night 56 main card.
Here’s the thing: Saint Preux is currently ranked No. 10 in the world at light heavyweight, so he’s not far from title contention. A win over Rua could earn him a fight against a top five contender, and another victory may propel him to a title shot. As for the No. 9-ranked Rua, he might be a bit farther away from a title fight in the UFC.
Let’s be honest: Rua is just 32, but he’s a very old 32. He has been involved in some of the most vicious wars in UFC history, including spirited five-round affairs with Dan Henderson and Lyoto Machida. After 12 years of fighting, there’s no question he’s nearing the end of his storied career. How much longer can he stick around in the sport? That all depends how well he does against Saint Preux.
At this point in Rua’s career, he’s basically a gatekeeper in the light heavyweight division. There’s no shame in that, as he helps the UFC determine who is and isn’t a legitimate title contender. He does so while earning a nice paycheck, so it’s a win-win for all parties involved. Rua has lost four of his last six, so it’s going to be a long road ahead if he’s to ever get back into title contention.
For now, he’ll focus on slipping past Saint Preux at UFC Fight Night 56. Elsewhere on the card, Juliana Lima fights Nina Ansaroff in women’s strawweight action. The current season of “The Ultimate Fighter” reality show features 16 of the top female strawweights, so Lima can cement herself as a top challenger for the winner of the show if she’s able to edge Ansaroff.
In other action on the UFC Fight Night 56 main card, welterweights collide, as Warlley Alves takes on Alan Jouban. A professional model, Jouban is putting his body on the line along with his beautiful face. The UFC Fight Night 56 main card features two other intriguing welterweight bouts, with Cláudio Silva battling Leon Edwards and Dhiego Lima fighting Jorge Oliveira.
UFC Fight Night 56 opened with an exciting preliminary card that aired exclusively on FOX Sports 2, as Wagner Silva fought Colby Covington at welterweight and Thomas Almeida battled Tim Gorman in bantamweight action. Charlie Brenneman also made a surprise return to the world-famous UFC Octagon, colliding with veteran striker Leandro Silva. The UFC Fight Night 56 main card airs on Fox Sports 1.