5 most intriguing bouts on UFC Fight Night 55 and UFC Fight Night 56

The UFC returns this weekend with back to back Fight Cards on either side of the globe.UFC Fight Night 56 #2

Among the two cards, there is a smattering of veterans, prospects, journeymen, and contenders.

Below are the 5 of the more intriguing bouts on the weekend.

5. Shogun Rua vs. Ovince St. Preux
The short notice matchup is a bit more appealing as a style contrast than the original main event in Brazil. The athletic, wrestle centric style of the younger OSP should provide a good indicator for what the legendary Rua has left in the tank. The longer the fight goes, the more it is likely to favor OSP. If Rua is as explosive as he once was, it will show through early in the fight. Both men are coming off of a loss, though it is Rua who is in desperate need of a win. Expect to see plenty of action early in this one.

4. Ross Pearson vs. Al Iaquinta
Two streaking lightweights looking to climb their way into the ranks of the toughest division in MMA. Iaquinta has won 4 of 5 and is coming off of his first stoppage win inside the octagon. Pearson has settled into a groove since returning to lightweight after an ill-advised run at featherweight. The two strikers matchup in what should be a fan friendly bout with the winner likely staking claim to a spot in the top 15.

3. Thomas Almeida vs. Tim Gorman
Make no mistake about, the only reason this fight is on this list is due to the UFC debut of Thomas Almeida. The 23 year old uber-prospect is 17-0 with 17 stoppage victories. Most recently, he blitzed his way through the bantamweight division in Legacy with his unique striking ability. The wrestling of Gorman will be Almeida’s first test inside the UFC. Anything less than a first round stoppage would be a disappointment.

2. Luke Rockhold vs. Michael Bisping
Perennial contender Bisping takes on former Strikeforce champion Rockhold in a fight that could have a major impact on the middleweight division. Rockhold is searching for that signature UFC win while Bisping is looking to string a few wins together in a row, both in hopes of moving towards a title shot. Their feud, along with the prolonged trash talk, has done more than enough to help promote this fight. Whether or not the bad blood will have an effect on the fight itself is the major question. Regardless, two of the best middleweights in the world competing for top contender status is well worth logging onto Fight Pass Friday night.

1. Ian McCall vs. John Lineker
McCall and Lineker are not only two of the three highest ranked fighters competing on the weekend, they are also two of the top flyweights in the world. The two collide with a potential shot at champion Demetrious Johnson on the line. The contest will likely be decided between Lineker’s freakish knockout power and McCall’s stifling top control. This will be a tightly contested, fast paced, technical fight.