In a bid to conclude the Ultimate Fighting Championship’s (UFC) 2023 schedule with a thrilling showdown, a captivating Bantamweight matchup is reportedly in the works.
Former undisputed and interim titleholder, Petr Yan (16-5), is set to clash with the emerging contender, Song Yadong (20-7-1, 1 no contest), in what could be the main event of a UFC Fight Night scheduled for December 9, 2023. The information, as per reports from Chris Presnell, suggests that while the event's location is yet to be confirmed, it is being eyed for Shanghai, China. The last time China hosted a UFC event was back in August 2019 when Zhang Weili secured the UFC Strawweight championship with a stunning 42-second technical knockout of Jessica Andrade in Shenzhen.
Petr Yan, aged 30, is determined to return to the win column after encountering a challenging phase marked by a three-fight losing streak. "No Mercy" last tasted victory with a unanimous decision triumph over Cory Sandhagen in October 2021. However, he faced back-to-back hard-fought split decision losses to former champion Aljamain Sterling and the current champion, Sean O’Malley. Unfortunately, Yan's misfortune continued in his third consecutive fight against the surging contender Merab Dvalishvili, who dominated him to secure a one-sided unanimous decision victory in March 2023.
On the other side, the 25-year-old Song Yadong achieved his first UFC main event victory in his recent outing, concluding a clash with Ricky Simon with a fifth-round strike in their April 2023 showdown (watch highlights). Song, hailing from China, boasts an impressive record, with four victories in his last five fights, with his only setback coming against the aforementioned Cory Sandhagen in late 2022.
If Yan vs. Song becomes the headlining bout on December 9, 2023, at the UFC Fight Night, it will be the third fight confirmed for the event. Two promising prospect matchups are already scheduled, with Zhang Mingyang set to face Brendson Ribeiro in the Light Heavyweight division, and Sumadaerjii taking on Allan Nascimento in the Flyweight division.
Original source: MMAmania
Image courtesy of MundoDeportivo