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UFC on ESPN 7: Fight card preview, start time and how to watch

UFC on ESPN 7: Fight card preview, start time and how to watch

Alistair Overeem enters the Octagon before facing Stipe Miocic during the UFC 203

The UFC touches down in the capital of the United States, Washington, D.C, this Saturday, December 7, with 12 fights live from the Capital One Arena.

In our main event of the evening, a couple of hard-hitting kickboxers will clash when a grizzled veteran meets an undefeated KO artist on the rise.

The card also features a former Muay Thai fighter known for her vicious clinch work taking on a scrappy grappler in the co-main event.

We dive deeper into the marquee fights below.

Main Card – ESPN (9 pm ET)

  • Alistair Overeem vs. Jairzinho Rozenstruik
  • Cynthia Calvillo vs. Marina Rodriguez
  • Ben Rothwell vs. Stefan Struve
  • Yana Kunitskaya vs. Aspen Ladd
  • Cody Stamann vs. Song Yadong
  • Rob Font vs. Ricky Simon

Preliminary Card – ESPN (7 pm ET)

  • Thiago Alves vs. Tim Means
  • Jacob Kilburn vs. Billy Quarantillo
  • Bryce Mitchell vs. Matt Sayles
  • Joe Solecki vs. Matt Wiman

Early Prelims – ESPN+ (6 pm ET)

  • Virna Jandiroba vs. Mallory Martin
  • Makhmud Muradov vs. Trevor Smith
Alistair Overeem before UFC 225
Alistair Overeem reacts before fighting at UFC 225 (Getty Images)

Main Event: Alistair Overeem vs. Jairzhino Rozenstruik

Few have had a combat sports career as prolific as Alistair Overeem (45-17). Throughout his 20+ years spent ina ring or cage, Overeem has competed in PRIDE Grand Prix’s, held the DREAM and Strikeforce heavyweight championship, and won the 2010 K-1 World Grand Prix in kickboxing.

“The Reem” is currently 2-2 in his last four going back to December 2017. It was then that Francis Ngannou earned a highlight reel KO over the Dutchman. Overeem was subsequently stopped by Curtis Blaydes in June of 2018. Over the last year, Overeem has gotten back on track picking up TKO victories over Sergei Pavlovich Alexy Oleynik.

Jairzhino Rozenstruik (9-0) began his MMA career in 2012 and would occasionally take fights in that sport between kickboxing bouts. Rozenstruik fully transitioned to MMA in 2017 and competed around the globe before debuting in the UFC in February. Since his promotional debut earlier this year, Rozenstruik has competed three times and won every bout via KO/TKO. 

Not only has Rozenstruik proven to be a finishing machine, but the manner in which he does so should be noted. “Bigi Boy” needed just 9 seconds to knockout Allen Crowder over the summer and only 29 seconds to finish a former UFC champion in Andrei Arlovski at UFC 244.

Co-main event: Cynthia Calvillo vs. Marina Rodriguez

Cynthia Calvillo (8-1) picked up wins against then-relative unknowns Aspen Ladd, Gillian Robinson, and Montana De La Rosa en route to signing with the UFC in 2017. 

In her first year with the promotion, she choked out Pearl Gonzalez, Amanda Cooper, and then took a unanimous decision over Joanne Calderwood. In her final bout of that year, Calvillo tasted defeat for the first time as a pro, falling to former strawweight champion, Carla Esparza. 

Since then, Calvillo has only fought twice. A broken foot and a suspension handed down for marijuana metabolites kept her from the cage for much of that two year period. Despite all the drama outside of competition, Calvillo won both of those bouts and will be looking to extend her win streak this weekend. 

Marina Rodriguez (12-0) burst onto the scene with her performance on Dana White’s Contender Series Brazil. The former Muay Thai fighter earned a contract based on that showing and went to draw with Randa Markos in her UFC debut in 2018. Rodriguez has competed twice thus far in 2019 and beaten Jessica Aguilar and Tecia Torres via decision in those outings. 

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