The excitement ahead of UFC 242 is growing and will soon reach fever-pitch. With every weekend the sport is on show, its popularity grows and it has been no different here. This time, the action is heading to the UAE and Abu Dhabi, where it has been showcased three times in the past. 

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To make things even better for fans, whether they will be attending live in the Gulf or watching on TV, is that the two biggest stars of the sport will be in attendance and going head to head. Here is a look at the big clash between Khabib Nurmagomedov and Daniel Poirier and a few of the other major bouts, with some betting tips added in.

Khabib Nurmagomedov vs Daniel Poirier

 

Wow, just look at this fight. It is hard to make clear how exciting this is to people who may not be too inclined to get to know the sport in a detailed manner. Both of these men are colossal in the light heavyweight division as their respective records show. Khabib, who famously beat Connor McGregor in a massive grudge match some years ago, has fought 27 times and remains unbeaten, with six of 11 UFC fights coming by unanimous decision. Poirier, meanwhile, has won 25 of 26 fights; although he has the better reach, it is hard to see Khabib not coming out on top in this one.

Betting Tip: Khabib by Knockout 6/1 @ Betfair

 

Edson Barboza vs Paul Felder

 

Alongside Khabib vs Poirier, this one is the co-main event of the entire round of fights. These two are journeymen in the sport, looking towards the end of their career. Edson Barboza, 33, has fought more times, winning 20 of 27 fights with no defeats, while Paul Felder, 35, has won won 16 without a loss. The chances are one of those records will go in this one, and it is tough to split them. Will Barboza’s slight age advantage help him? It is tough to say, but with the pair measuring the same in both height and weight, the difference will surely be tiny. Barboza does have the slightly better reach, though, which could see join come out on top. The bookmakers certainly seem to believe he will win this one.

 

Betting Tip: Barboza to win 4/5 @ Coral

 

Islam Makhachev vs Davi Ramos 

 

Unlike the previous two picks, this is a clash of two rather inexperienced fighters, despite their ages. Davi Ramos is 32, while Islam Makhachev is five years younger at 27, but neither have the fighting numbers of some others in action across this big event. Despite the age difference, Makhachev is actually the more experienced of the two, and that could give him an edge, particularly if you are thinking about putting some money down on this fight. He has won 17 of his 18 fights, without defeat, and while Ramos hasn’t suffered a loss either, he only has 12 fights to his name. It is easy to see why this one isn’t bringing in as much attention, and there isn’t much to split them. But he bookmakers are backing a Makhachev victory.

 

Betting Tip: Islam Makhachev to win 1/2 @ Paddy Power

There are quite a few ways to watch the event; not all of them legitimate. You’ll find a lot of websites out there that will be streaming it free, though the quality and reliability of the stream will likely be poor. If you intend to use one, make sure you’re using your VPN.

Here’s a list of official streaming sites to watch UFC live:

  • UFC Fight Pass
  • BT Sport (UK)
  • OSN (Middle East)
  • Viaplay (Sweden, Denmark
  • Match TV(Russia)
  • Fox Sports (Australia)
  • FightNetwork (Canada)

Not everyone can watch it, whether it’s through region restriction or a lack of access to streaming services. With the use of a VPN, viewers needn’t worry about these issues. Here are some of the benefits to expect when using a VPN.

  • Using a VPN for UFC means watching without any restrictions. They provide access to a wide range of server locations, making it easy to find uninterrupted streams in your chosen location.
  • They encrypt all data with the strongest protocols, so your data can’t be intercepted and used for undesirable purposes.
  • Professional support from the technical team means uninterrupted service
  • Users benefit from trial versions or money-back guarantees, which is useful when shopping around
  • Changing server location means accessing region-specific, exclusive content

What Is a VPN and how it can Help

A virtual private network diverts a user’s traffic through its own secure, private servers, making all activity anonymous. Selecting a server outside the user’s country will give them access to region-specific content, whilst effectively spoofing web services like BT Sport into thinking they’re based in the designated country. This is particularly useful to those looking for the right sport provider.

It’s important to stay safe on the web, and VPN users can do this effortlessly. By masking their online traffic with 256-bit encryption, VPN users can safely avoid hackers, governments and ISPs interfering in their activity. Plus, the best providers will even offer unlimited bandwidth and server switching, which is always useful for live events like the UFC. Overcrowded servers, much like bandwidth throttling from ISPs, will harm a connection and cause the fight to buffer.

The Best VPNs for Streaming UFC

ExpressVPN

One of the main reasons people choose ExpressVPN as their provider is its 3000+ servers in over 90 countries. Combined with unlimited server switching and bandwidth, streaming live events becomes faultless. Being able to connect on most devices and operating systems means catching the fight from anywhere with Wi-Fi. For staying protected on those public Wi-Fi- zones, it offers military-grade, 256-bit AES encryption, keeping your activity safe from hackers and snoopers. And should you run into any problems, they offer 24/7 live chat and phone support.

For keeping their users safe on the web, they offer other security features like a zero-knowledge DNS and a network lock kill switch, as well as a strict no-logging policy.

Express VPN has proven to everyone that it’s one of the best services out there. Not only does it maintain user privacy with a no-log policy, but it’s the fastest VPN on the market according to research. With thousands of servers to choose from, all of which are optimized, speed and accessibility aren’t an issue.

ExpressVPN is a great choice for torrenting and streaming due to its quick connections and reliable uptime. It has all the necessary security features and many advanced ones, like split tunneling, for extra protection and clear access on apps and services. With great apps for desktop and mobile, three simultaneous connections, and a well-organized website, express VPN is undeniably the best service to use for streaming the matchup. Setting up is simple, too. See below for instructions.

  1. Install ExpressVPN on any device that you want to stream the fights on and sign up
  2. Connect to any ExpessVPN server in the US 3
  3. Visit http://www.foxsports.com/foxsportsgo or a similar service and sign in (you may need a US cable or satellite subscription)
  4. Enjoy the fights!

Click here to visit ExpressVPN


NordVPN

As far as streaming goes, NordVPN is a main contender. Not only does it have a massive 5000+ server network in 62 countries, it combines VPN and Smart DNS technologies to offer a securer experience for streaming specifically. And with unlimited bandwidth and server switching, that means uninterrupted streaming for all events. For anyone who uses P2P to stream the event or download it later, NordVPN is P2P-friendly, and has servers optimized for the best torrenting experience.

NordVPN has you covered when it comes to security too. It uses the same 256-bit AES encryption as the others, along with Double VPN and CyberSec technology. It also uses DNS leak protection, an automatic kill switch, Onion over VPN and has a no-log policy.

Click here to visit NordVPN


CyberGhost

If you’re looking for the best VPN, you should consider CyberGhost VPN. More bang for your buck is what makes CyberGhost VPN one of the most reasonable VPNs out there. Boasting more than 1524 servers in 60 countries, double encryption and a 256-bit AES encryption, it ensures fast connections and reliable performance. CyberGhost is a respectable VPN service for keeping internet connecting secure, private and anonymous.

CyberGhost also offers a 30-day money-back guarantee for those who want to try before committing

Click here to visit CyberGhost


VyprVPN

Golden Frog’s VyprVPN is a smart choice on performance. Owning and operating their own network and infrastructure means no hassle with third-parties and a performance-and-privacy focused service. While Vypr has less servers than ExpressVPN, with just 700 in comparison, it has a dense spread across six continents. Besides, 700 servers are more than enough for a great performance and for streaming live too. VyprVPN employs exclusive Chameleon technology for making bypassing any region-restricted content more effective.

As for security, VyprVPN also uses 256-bit AES encryption, the best there is, and also offers total DNS protection, an automatic kill switch and public Wi-Fi protection. Just like the others mentioned, Vypr doesn’t collect or store any logs on user data.

Click here to visit VyprVPN

UFC: A growing phenomenon

The world of popularized, organized combat sport has come a long way since Boxing’s Olympic debut in Ancient Greece. Boxing, for some, amounts to nothing more than a couple of brutes throwing slogs at each other. For others, it’s a career choice; a shared passion between friends and family members; a chance to improve oneself with discipline and to not deviate from the straight and narrow. Across multiple championships and throughout generations, some of the world’s most prestigious, most-revered athletes have proven themselves in the sport.

But as interest grew, so did the need for other disciplines to take to the professional stage. Federations sprouted to nationally and internationally regulate other combat sports like Muay Thai, Taekwondo, Kickboxing and Karate. And naturally, the all-encompassing sport of MMA (Mixed Martial Arts) followed. Though there are many other MMA leagues out there, the most popular and well-known championship continues to be the UFC. Since its establishment in 1993, the franchise has gone on to eclipse most other leagues out there in terms of popularity. What began as what many perceived to be a one-off event has bloomed into a franchise comprised of the world’s greatest athletes, a massive international fanbase and millions of dollars in funding and revenue.

The UFC was born for many reasons, but ultimately, it was designed to identify the most effective martial-art discipline in bouts with very few rules and no defining weights and classes. It’s in these match-ups that fighters began adopting techniques from other disciplines, thus creating the style of mixed martial arts that we know today. Many people involved in combat sports, especially those who established the UFC, believe that technique far outweighs any weight, height or reach disadvantage, which is why the league was originally established the way it was. Without divisions, fighters would face-off with people with serious height and weight advantages, seemingly making the whole thing unfair. The legendary Gracie family, who were the inspiration and co-creators of the UFC, proved otherwise.

UFC TITLE HOLDERS –

  1. Heavyweight – Daniel Cormier
  2. Light Heavyweight Jon Jones
  3. Middleweight – Robert Whittaker
  4. Welterweight – Kamaru Usman
  5. Lightweight – Khabib Nurmagomedov
  6. Men’s Featherweight – Max Holloway
  7. Men’s Bantamweight – Vacant
  8. Men’s Flyweight – Hendry Cejudo
  9. Women’s featherweight – Amanda Nunes
  10. Women’s bantamweight – Amanda Nunes
  11. Women’s Flyweight – Valentina Shevchenko
  12. Women’s Strawweight – Jessica Andrade

Royce Gracie, a master of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu and longstanding legend of the UFC, proved in three of the first four UFC matchups to take place that advantages like height and reach don’t dictate the outcome of a fight, much rather their skillset and discipline.

The UFC, while immensely popular, isn’t the only major franchise to garner a large fanbase. Bellator and One Fighting Championship, for example, contain some of the greatest fighters and contentions to not grace the UFC octagon. Bellator is another American MMA promotion which has many ex-UFC fighters, as well as homegrown athletes. One Fighting Championship is Asia’s largest mixed martial arts league, and aims to promote ‘the true beauty of martial arts through the development of global superheroes’.