The card for UFC Fight Night 77 in São Paulo is starting to shake out, with two more announcements coming this week. Fabio Maldonado will face Tom Lawlor and Glover Teixeira will square off with Patrick Cummins.
Fabio Maldonado, famous for reaching the final of The Ultimate Fighter Brazil 3 (where he fell to Stipe Miocic), and infamous for calling out a handful of light heavyweights after his loss to Quinton Jackson at UFC 186, will look to his boxing to down Lawlor. Maldonado, nicknamed in his native Brazilian Caipira de Aco or “Hillbilly Steel”, had over twenty-two professional boxing matches before taking to MMA exclusively in 2010. Of those twenty-two bouts, twenty-one were knockouts, and all were wins.
His opponent, coming off an impressive victory over Gian Villante at UFC Fight Night: Barao/Dillashaw 2, “Filthy” Tom Lawlor is viewed more as a grappler and would do well to take this fight to the ground. After a lackluster drop to middleweight, where Lawlor went 4-4, Filthy will look to string another win onto his return to light heavyweight.
Glover Teixeira and Patrick Cummins is another interesting fight that was announced for UFC Fight Night 77. Teixeira, the Brazilian that exploded onto the UFC stage only to lose to Jon Jones for the belt at UFC 172, has since gone 1-1. An impressive rear-naked choke on OSP earlier this month that earned him Fight of the Night honors may well be the spark for the #3 Light Heavyweight. A dominant win over Cummins could see him challenging for the belt in 2016.
But Patrick Cummins won’t be stopped easily, nor should he be overlooked. Relatively new to the professional MMA, Cummins sprinted into the UFC only to face the future champ Daniel Cormier in his premier bout. A second loss against OSP in April of this year dropped him to 7-2, but he quickly regained his footing against Rafael Cavalcante earlier this month. While the rankings show Cummins at #10, seven spots behind Teixeira, Cummins is an incredibly talented wrestler (twice selected for the US national team) and one of the most mentally tough fighters in the division.
UFC Fight Night 77 is headlined by the rubber match between Vitor Belfort and Dan Henderson. It will take place November 7th at Ginásio do Ibirapuera in São Paulo, Brazil.