(Sanchez racks up some serious “Octagon control” points at UFC Fight Night 42 in June. / Photo via Getty)
- Dennis Bermudez vs. Ricardo Lamas: Bermudez has won seven straight fights since becoming a finalist on TUF 14 — the longest win streak in UFC featherweight history. Coming off Performance of the Night-earning victories against Jimy Hettes and Clay Guida this year, Bermudez could clinch a title shot with a victory against Lamas, the former title challenger who bounced back to the win column with a decision over Hacran Dias in June. (Hispanic credentials: Bermudez is Puerto Rican-American; Lamas is half-Cuban, half-Mexican.)
- Diego Sanchez vs. Norman Parke: You know Sanchez as the old-school warrior who won his last fight against Ross Pearson via judges’ robbery, and hasn’t finished a fight in over six years. He’s already #4 on the significant strikes absorbed leaderboard, and will look to improve his position against Parke, the TUF Smashes lightweight winner who has yet to lose a fight in the Octagon, and most recently TKO’d Naoyuki Kotani in Dublin last month. (Hispanic credentials: Sanchez is Mexican-American, Parke is a white dude from Northern Ireland.)
- Kelvin Gastelum vs. Jake Ellenberger: In a match that’s currently set as the evening’s co-main event, undefeated TUF 17 winner Kelvin Gastelum will face off against veteran welterweight Jake Ellenberger, who has lost his last two fights against Rory MacDonald and Robbie Lawler. It’s a big opportunity for Gastelum, and a possible must-win situation for the struggling “Juggernaut.” (Hispanic credentials: Gastelum is Mexican-American, Ellenberger is your basic white man from Nebraska.)
UFC 180 will also feature the TUF: Latin America featherweight and bantamweight finals, Mexican welterweight prospect Augusto Montano against an opponent to be named later, and Mexican bantamweight Erik “Goyito” Perez against American Dragon Ball Z fan Marcus Brimage.