Saturday night’s event at the UFC Apex may not feature a big-time title fight or a bunch of the UFC’s most recognizable stars, but UFC Fight Night 186 is packed with rising prospects and fringe contenders looking to make a breakthrough as they make their first appearances of 2021.
- How Old Is Alexander Hernandez Ufc Fighter
- How Old Is Alexander Hernandez Ufc Fights
- How Old Is Alexander Hernandez Ufc Champion
The main event features a pivotal bout in the heavyweight division, as Surinamese knockout artist Jairzinho Rozenstruik and rising French contender Ciryl Gane go head-to-head in a bout that could potentially put them as little as one win away from a shot at UFC gold.
Now Alexander “The Great” is looking to mount another charge. Hernandez (12-3 MMA, 4-2 UFC) takes on Brazilian Thiago Moises (14-4 MMA, 3-2 UFC), who heads into Saturday’s event riding a two-fight winning streak, thanks to victories over lightweight veterans Michael Johnson and Bobby Green. The signs are positive for Hernandez, however. Ashley Yoder 2 postponed due to COVID-19 protocols, moved to UFC Vegas 21 New, 3 comments By Alexander K. Lee @AlexanderKLee Updated Feb 27, 2021, 1:03pm EST. Thiago Moises had a “great” year in 2020, defeating longtime octagon veterans Michael Johnson and Bobby Green to put together his first winning streak as a UFC fighter. Alexander Hernandez. Crushing low kicks, efficient counters and stellar striking defense spurred the American Top Team rep to a unanimous decision over Alexander Hernandez in the featured UFC Fight Night 186 prelim on. Rising heavyweight Ciryl Gane earned the biggest win of his career by dominating Jairzinho Rozenstruik in Saturday's UFC Fight Night main event.Here are four takeaways from the card.Gane ascends.
In the co-main event, light heavyweight contenders Magomed Ankalaev and Nikita Krylov will face off in a big bout for both men at 205 pounds, while bantamweight veterans Pedro Munhoz and Jimmie Rivera will face off for a second time as they look to push themselves back toward the sharp end of the 135-pound division.
UFC Fight Night 186 takes place Saturday in Las Vegas. The event streams on ESPN+.
Ahead of the action, check out our five burning questions heading into fight night.
Just how good is Ciryl Gane?
You just need to slap eyes on Ciryl Gane on a fight night to know that the big Frenchman is a bit special. He’s a colossal tank of a man, and his easy, relaxed nature is one of a man who knows what he’s about to do when the referee says, “fight.”
But, if we’re being brutally honest, we still don’t fully know how good Gane (7-0 MMA, 4-0 UFC) really is.
We do know he’s already seriously good – the way he calmly, coolly dismantled former UFC heavyweight champion Junior Dos Santos demonstrated that. But despite that performance, we were left with the sense that we’re still only scratching the surface of the 30-year-old’s true potential.
On Saturday night, he’ll face an acid test of his contender credentials when he takes on Jairzinho Rozenstruik in the main event. The Surinamese striker has a massive experience advantage over Gane, given his extensive kickboxing career before transitioning to MMA.
Rozenstruik’s lone loss is a recent, and notable one – a brutal knockout at the hands of Francis Ngannou – but that defeat remains the only blemish on his MMA record. The rest of it? Ten knockouts, one decision.
Rozenstruik (11-1 MMA, 5-1 UFC) is a lethal knockout artist, who has a long list of victims on his resume, and he’s likely to test Gane’s chin early. If Gane, and his chin, can pass that test, he may have the more well-rounded skillset of the pair. But this is undoubtedly the toughest, most dangerous assignment of Gane’s career.
If he wins on Saturday – especially if he wins inside the distance – it’ll be time to start getting excited about “Bon Gamin” as a serious title threat.
Can Magomed Ankalaev continue his rise to the top?
I’ve been high on Magomed Ankalaev ever since he arrived in the UFC’s light heavyweight division and, his stunning last-second tap to a Paul Craig’s hail-Mary triangle choke aside, the Russian has been almost perfect inside the octagon.
After that shock loss to Craig – a fight he had completely dominated until the final few seconds – in London back in 2018, Ankalaev (14-1 MMA, 5-1 UFC) has bounced back with a vengeance. He’s reeled off four consecutive victories, with each of his last three wins coming via knockout, but it still feels like Ankalaev should have more buzz around him than there currently is.
His momentum took something of a hit after his contested first-round finish of Ion Cutelaba at UFC Fight Night 169 led to an immediate rematch that required four separate bookings before it eventually came to fruition.
In the rematch eight months after their first meeting, Ankalaev delivered another first-round finish at UFC 254 to eliminate any doubt over the initial result, and now the Dagestani contender is looking to make a charge toward the division’s elite.
On Saturday, Ankalaev takes on Nikita Krylov (27-7 MMA, 8-5 UFC), who has struggled for consistency since returning to the UFC for his second stint with the promotion. Wins over Ovince Saint-Preux and Johnny Walker have been balanced out by defeats to Jan Blachowicz and Glover Texeira, suggesting that “The Miner” sits just outside the division’s very top contenders.
Victory for either man would represent a huge step forward for their respective careers, but for Ankalaev in particular, it’s a chance to add a notable name to his resume and, perhaps, score a more impressive win than those achieved by longtime contender Teixeira and current champ Blachowicz.
If he does, we could well see the 28-year-old sharing the octagon with top-five-level opposition later this year.
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Which bantamweight stalwart will regain crucial momentum?
Ranked just inside the UFC’s official bantamweight top 10, Pedro Munhoz and Jimmie Rivera will both have set their sights set on the division’s top contenders when plotting their year ahead. But only one of them can kick off their 2021 with a momentum boost.
Munhoz (18-5 MMA, 8-5 UFC) and Rivera (23-4 MMA, 7-3 UFC) will face off in a bantamweight rematch that represents a pivotal bout for both men.
Munhoz is looking to regain the form that saw him reel off a trio of impressive wins in 2018 and 2019. Unfortunately, the momentum gained through his victories over Brett Johns, Bryan Caraway, and Cody Garbrandt – a stunning knockout – was wiped out with a unanimous decision loss to Aljamain Sterling, then, in a frustrating COVID-hit year in 2020, a split-decision defeat to Frankie Edgar in a fight that many – including our own scorecard here at MMA Junkie – saw the Brazilian as the winner.
He’ll be looking to kickstart another run of form against Rivera, who snapped a two-fight skid with a unanimous decision win over Cody Stamann last July at UFC on ESPN 13.
“El Terror” was on the verge of title contention in 2018, but damaging defeats to Marlon Moraes, Sterling, and Petr Yan have seen his momentum take a hit, and he’s now looking to build a fresh run of form to push him back toward the division’s best.
Both men have the capability of moving up and causing problems for those ranked above them at 135 pounds. Rivera took the split-decision win in their first meeting at UFC Fight Night 77 in 2015, but who’ll walk away from the UFC Apex with the crucial victory in their rematch on Saturday?
Can Kevin Croom pick up his first UFC win - again?
Kevin Croom should be heading into Saturday’s event looking to claim his second UFC win. But, thanks to the Nevada State Athletic Commission’s dim view of marijuana use, “The Hard-Hitting Hillbilly” now has to go out and pick up his first UFC win – again.
Croom’s stunning 31-second guillotine choke submission of Roosevelt Roberts in a short-notice lightweight debut at UFC Fight Night 177 last September was one of the outstanding submission finishes of the year. But his memorable win was wiped from the record when the NSAC overturned the result and declared it a no contest. But, while the result may have been struck from the record books, it doesn’t mean it didn’t happen.
We all know that Croom (21-12 MMA, 0-0 UFC) is capable of snatching a quick submission and ending a fight in an instant, and with 16 finishes (10 submissions, six KOs) from his 21 career wins, it’s clear to see that Croom is a bonafide finisher of fights.
Now he’ll look to prove it all over again when he takes on Alex Caceres (17-12 MMA, 12-10 UFC) at his natural class of featherweight. Both men have fun fighting styles that should mesh well on fight night, and if Croom can add “Bruce Leeroy” to his list of finishes, the Glory MMA prospect will start to make people sit up and take notice.
Is 'Alexander Hernandez 2.0' ready for ranked opposition at 155?
After Alexander Hernandez blasted his way into the UFC with a 42-second finish of Beneil Dariush at UFC 222, then a dominant decision win over Olivier Aubin-Mercier at UFC on FOX 30, it seemed like the UFC had found a new lightweight contender. But two TKO losses to Donald Cerrone and Drew Dober in his last four outings have pumped the brakes on his rise to the sharp end of the UFC’s stacked 155-pound division. Now Alexander “The Great” is looking to mount another charge.
Hernandez (12-3 MMA, 4-2 UFC) takes on Brazilian Thiago Moises (14-4 MMA, 3-2 UFC), who heads into Saturday’s event riding a two-fight winning streak, thanks to victories over lightweight veterans Michael Johnson and Bobby Green.
The signs are positive for Hernandez, however. He’s made key changes to his approach and last year upped sticks and moved from Texas to Colorado to join the Factory X team under the leadership of coach Marc Montoya.
Those changes have already paid off, with his last appearance seeing him bounce back from his loss to Dober with a 106-second finish of Chris Gruetzemacher at UFC Fight Night 181 last October.
How Old Is Alexander Hernandez Ufc Fighter
Now settled with a new team, in a new state, and with six UFC fights under his belt, Hernandez says it’s time to start claiming wins and taking names once again as he looks to break his way into the lightweight rankings.
On paper, this looks like “Alexander Hernandez 2.0.” It’ll be very interesting to see how he looks on fight night.
Jairzinho Rozenstruik will face Ciryl Gane in a blockbuster heavyweight clash in the main event of UFC Vegas 20. The whole card consists of some really intriguing fights as fans await yet another weekend of UFC action. The preliminary card too has some great action considering it is only a Fight Night event.
Alexander Hernandez will return this weekend against Thiago Moises in a lightweight clash. He last fought in October and earned a sensational first-round KO of Chris Gruetzemacher in that bout. He will look to build on that display in the featured prelims clash at the UFC Apex on Saturday.
Alexander Hernandez in numbers
How Old Is Alexander Hernandez Ufc Fights
‘The Great’ Hernandez has only been beaten by Drew Dober and Donald Cerrone in the UFC. Despite that, his sensational debut against Beneil Dariush still remains fresh in the memory of UFC faithful. His last fight would have rekindled memories of that and shown him what he can do.
He has landed 3.93 signature strikes per minute inside the Octagon and has absorbed 4.22 in return. He has a knockdown ratio of 0.61 with an average fight time of 8:08 minutes.
The Texas native, Hernandez, has a professional record of 12-3 and will look to make it 13 at the UFC Apex. However, his 57% takedown defense will be tested.
Thiago Moises in numbers
The 25-year-old Brazilian, Moises, holds a professional record of 14-4. He is a five-fight UFC veteran with his organizational record standing at 3-2. Beneil Dariush and Damir Ismagulov have bettered him so far in his UFC career. Out of his 3 wins, a submission over Michael Johnson stands out the most. He earned a decision against Bobby Green in his last fight in October.
Moises is a submission expert with 6 submissions under his belt. However, he has won only once in the octagon by tapping out his opponent. In the UFC, the 25-year-old has a takedown average of 2.00 per 15 minutes and has a submission average of 2.50 per 15 minutes. He also holds a 63% striking accuracy, landing 74 of his 118 strikes.
One might see it as a classic striker vs grappler match-up. But, that is far from the case, as both fighters are very well equipped in every section of the game. However, Hernandez has lethal power in his hands and can knock anybody out, and that is what we feel will happen at UFC Vegas 20.
How Old Is Alexander Hernandez Ufc Champion
Final Prediction: Alexander Hernandez by KO/TKO
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