Sean Strickland is stepping in for Kelvin Gastelum to fight Nassourdine Imavov this weekend, after Gastelum was ruled out of Saturday’s UFC Fight Night main event.
Strickland will be back in the ring just one month after he last fought, when he suffered a second straight defeat – a decision loss to Jared Cannonier – after Gastelum sustained a mouth injury to extend his 17-month absence from the Octagon.
Meanwhile, Frenchman Imavov last fought in September, outpointing Joaquin Buckley in front of a raucous home crowd at UFC Paris to improve his record to 12-3. The rising contender has the momentum here, entering this contest on a three-fight win streak.
He is facing his toughest test yet, however, as the UFC’s 12th-ranked middleweight goes up against No 7 in the form of Strickland. The new main event will take place at light-heavyweight, though, due to Strickland’s short-notice weight-cut.
Here’s all you need to know.
When is it?
The prelims will start at 10pm GMT on Saturday 14 January (2pm PT, 4pm CT, 5pm ET), with the main card following at 12am GMT on Sunday 15 January (4pm PT, 6pm CT, 7pm ET on Saturday).
How can I watch it?
The card will air live on BT Sport in the UK, with the broadcaster’s app and website also streaming the fights.
In the US, ESPN+ will stream the action live, as will the UFC’s Fight Pass.
Imavov – 19/40
Gastelum – 17/10
Full card (subject to change)
Sean Strickland vs Nassourdine Imavov (light-heavyweight)
Dan Ige vs Damon Jackson (featherweight)
Punahele Soriano vs Roman Kopylov (middleweight)
Ketlen Vieira vs Raquel Pennington (women’s bantamweight)
Umar Nurmagomedov vs Raoni Barcelos (bantamweight)
Claudio Ribeiro vs Abdul Razak Alhassan (middleweight)
Mateusz Rebecki vs Nick Fiore (lightweight)
Javid Basharat vs Mateus Mendonca (bantamweight)
Allan Nascimento vs Carlos Hernandez (flyweight)
Isaac Dulgarian vs Daniel Argueta (featherweight)
Charles Johnson vs Jimmy Flick (flyweight)
Priscila Cachoeira vs Sijara Eubanks (women’s flyweight)