A heavyweight pairing between former WSOF and PFL heavyweight champion, Blagoy ‘Bagata’ Ivanov, and Paraná native, Augusto Sakai has been rescheduled to feature at a UFC Fight Night event on May 23rd. in Las Vegas, Nevada – with a venue yet to be confirmed by the promotion.
Ivanov was set to clash with Sakai at UFC 250 on May 9th. until the event was postponed amid, the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. News of the rebooked pairing was first reported by Combate writer, Marcelo Barone.
Bulgarian power-house, Ivanov, will look to return from a razor-thin decision loss to former title challenger, Derrick ‘The Black Beast’ Lewis at UFC 244 in November. Before the split decision judging defeat, Ivanov had amassed two victories over Ben Rothwell, and Tai Tuivasa. The 33-year-old has only dropped three professional defeats in his twenty-two fight career – falling to former division best, Junior dos Santos, and an earlier defeat to Alexander Volkov at the Bellator season ten heavyweight tournament finale in May of 2014. The American Kickboxing Academy trainee has managed to go 2-2 since his Octagon bow back in July of 2018.
Brazilian prospect, Sakai, will look to extend an impressive win streak to six fights, with a victory over Ivanov. The 28-year-old joined the heavyweight ranks of the UFC back in September of 2018 – having previously competed on Dana White’s Tuesday Night Contenders Series. Sakai has so far managed wins over Chase Sherman, former heavyweight titleholder, Andrei Arlovski, and former M-1 Global heavyweight gold holder, Marcin Tybura. The renowned knockout artist competed six times under the Bellator banner, with his sole career defeat coming against UFC alumni, Cheick Kongo in a close split decision draw.
The UFC Fight Night event is expected to take place on May 23rd. in Las Vegas, Nevada – with a venue yet to be officially confirmed by the promotion. A meeting of welterweight challengers is set to headline the event, as former titleholder, Tyron Woodley returns for the first time since his title loss to Kamaru Usman last March – when he tackles surging Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu player, Gilbert ‘Durinho’ Burns. In a strawweight pairing, grappling ace, Mackenzie Dern is set to return to the Octagon, as she matches with Hannah Cifers. At heavyweight, Klidson Abreu takes on Jamahal Hill.