A UFC middleweight pairing between grappling ace, Jack ‘The Joker’ Hermansson, and one-time interim title challenger, Kelvin Gastelum is set for a UFC ‘Fight Island’ event on July 18th.
Sweden native, Hermansson headlined UFC Fight Night Copenhagen in September of last year – losing a second-round knockout to emerging contender, Jared ‘The Killa Gorilla’ Cannonier. Attempting to rebound from two consecutive losses, Kings MMA trainee Gastelum has dropped decisions to one-time welterweight title contender, Darren ‘The Gorilla’ Till, and current division champion, Israel ‘The Last Stylebender’ Adesanya. News of the slated pairing was first reported by ESPN reporter, Brett Okamoto.
Hermansson, 31, was expected to headline UFC Fight Night Oklahoma City on May 2nd. against former middleweight champion, Chris Weidman, however, the matchup was shelved after the entire card was postponed amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
With sixteen finishes from twenty professional wins, Hermansson presents one of the most dangerous finishers at 185-pounds today. Prior to his above-noted loss to Cannonier, the former Cage Warriors middleweight titleholder picked up wins over former Strikeforce middleweight crown holder, Jacaré Souza, former WSOF light heavyweight and middleweight best, David Branch, Gerald Meerschaert, and Thales Leites.
10th. Planet Jiu-Jitsu black belt, Gastelum rose to Octagon prominence back in 2016 – going on an almost ‘legend killing’ tour. A three-fight unbeaten run began with a unanimous decision win over former welterweight best, Johny Hendricks, Tim Kennedy, and a knockout of Vitor Belfort before the result was overturned after Gastelum tested positive for marijuana metabolites.
After an arm-triangle loss to the aforementioned, Weidman, in a headlining matching, he established a lot of early success in – the 28-year-old stopped former 185-pound titleholder, Michael Bisping on short-notice. Taking a close decision win over the previously mentioned Jacaré, Gastelum earned an interim clash with Adesanya, in a bout which was awarded the 2019 Fight of the Year award by numerous outlets.