UFC returns to WV with championship rematch | Sports


For the first time in more than two years, the UFC returns to Arizona and welcomes fans at full capacity with a pair of league games.

The headliner of the event will be middleweight champion Israel Adesanya as he looks to fend off No. 3 ranked Marvin Vettori. In the co-main event, flyweight champion Deiveson Figueiredo and contestant No.1 Brandon Moreno are looking to settle the score after their majority draw in December.

UFC 263: Adesanya vs Vettori 2 takes place on Saturday, June 12 at Gila River Arena.

All fights will be broadcast on ESPN + in English and Spanish. The first preliminaries begin at 3 p.m. on ESPN + and UFC Fight Pass. The preliminaries will be distributed on ESPN, ESPN Deportes and ESPN + starting at 5 p.m. The UFC 263 main card will stream exclusively on ESPN + Pay-Per-View starting at 7 p.m. ET.

Tickets are on sale at ticketmaster.com or ufcfightclub.com. Ticket sales are limited to eight per person.

UFC middleweight champion Adesanya (20-1, fighter in Auckland, New Zealand) returns to his natural weight class, looking to successfully defend his title for the third time.

Since joining the UFC roster in 2018, Adesanya has grown into one of the best pound-for-pound fighters in the world, a distinction he has earned with victories over Paulo Costa, Robert Whittaker and Anderson Silva. He intends to improve on his 2018 win over Vettori and continue his quest to become the greatest middleweight in UFC history.

Vettori (17-4-1, fighting out of Huntington Beach, Calif. To Mezzocorona, Italy) plans to make the most of his first UFC title by becoming the first middleweight to defeat Adesanya. Unbeaten since losing by split decision to the current middleweight champion in 2018, Vettori rose through the ranks with dominating wins over Karl Roberson, Jack Hermansson and Kevin Holland. He is now looking to show his evolution as a fighter and achieve the biggest victory of his career.

UFC flyweight champion Figueiredo (20-1-1, fighter in Condor Belem, Para, Brazil) returns to action in a bid to make a statement and show he’s the best player at 125 pounds in the world. Renowned finisher, he’s tied for most saves in UFC flyweight history with seven, a number he racked up with wins over Alex Perez, Joseph Benavidez (twice) and Tim Elliott. Figueiredo is looking to continue his title reign with a record performance.

Top-ranked Moreno (18-5-2, fighting in Tijuana, Mexico) aims to shock the world in his second chance at UFC gold. Black belt of Brazilian jiujitsu, Moreno got his first shot in Figueiredo after notable wins over contenders Kai Kara-France, Jussier Formiga and Brandon Royval. He now hopes to leave no doubt that he is the true flyweight champion and start building his own legacy at the top of the 125 pound scale.

Additional fights on the map:

In a historic first non-main event, a five-round bout, No.3-ranked welterweight Leon Edwards (18-3, 1 NC, fighter in Birmingham, England) once again welcomes fan favorite Nate Diaz (21- 12, fighting in Stockton, Calif.).

Ranked light heavyweights go head to head as No.14 Paul Craig (14-4-1, fighter in Coatbridge, Scotland) and No.15 Jamahal Hill (8-0, fighter in Kentwood, Mich.) Battle it out the top 10.

In a battle of welterweight contenders, Demian Maia (28-10, ranked No.8, fighting in Sao Paulo, Brazil) locks the horns with No.12 Belal Muhammad (18-3, 1 NC, fighter from Chicago).

Drew Dober (23-10, 1 NC, fighting in Denver) and Brad Riddell (9-1, fighting in Auckland, New Zealand) face off in an action-packed lightweight bout.

In a light and heavy fight, Eryk Anders (13-5, 1 NC, fighter outside Birmingham, Alabama) meets Darren Stewart (12-6, fighter outside London, England).

Lauren Murphy (14-4, fighting out of Houston), 3rd female flyweight, is looking to secure her first UFC title shot by knocking out 6th Joanne Calderwood (15-5, fighting in Glasgow).

An intriguing featherweight fight sees Movsar Evloev (14-0, fighting Coconut Creek, Fla. Via Ingushetia, Russia), undefeated 14th-ranked Hakeem Dawodu (12-1-1, fighting against Calgary, Alberta, Canada).

No.11 female bantamweight contender Pannie Kianzad (15-5, fighting in Helsingborg, Skane County, Sweden) wins the biggest victory of her career over former title challenger Alexis Davis (20-10, fighter in Port Colborne, Ontario, Canada).

Frank Camacho (22-9, fighter outside Saipan, Northern Mariana Islands) and Matt Frevola (8-2-1, fighter outside Long Island) face off in a light fight, but guaranteed to entertain.

Bantamweight female Sijara Eubanks (7-6, fighting in Toms River, New Jersey), ranked No. 14, fights Karol Rosa (14-3, fighting in Rio de Janeiro).

Featherweight prospect Chase Hooper (10-1-1, fighter in Enumclaw, Wash.) Plans to show off his evolving skills when he takes on veteran Steven Peterson (18-9, fighter in Dallas).

Fares Ziam (11-3, fighter from Givors, Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes, France) and Luigi Vendramini (9-1, fighter from Brasilia, Brazil) face each other in a light fight.

Heavyweights Carlos Felipe (10-1, fighter outside of Bahia, Brazil) and Jake Collier (12-5, fighter outside Cuba, Missouri) are looking to climb the ranks.

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