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Francis Ngannou-Derrick Lewis in works for UFC 226 in Vegas

The UFC is close to finalizing a heavyweight fight between recent title challenger Francis Ngannou and Derrick Lewis for UFC 226 on July 7 in Las Vegas. Multiple sources said the planned matchup to ESPN. The UFC 226 pay-per-view event will take place at T-Mobile Arena. MMAFighting.com first reported the new heavyweight matchup. Ngannou (11-2) fought Stipe Miocic for the title at UFC 221 in January. The French-Cameroonian heavyweight came up short in a unanimous decision. Prior to the loss, Ngannou had finished all six opponents he faced in the…

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Alexander Gustafsson signs multi-fight deal with UFC, expects his next fight ‘soon’

Two-time UFC title challenger Alexander Gustafsson has signed a new multifight deal with the promotion and expects his next fight to take place “very soon.” The Swedish light heavyweight signed his new deal while in Los Angeles this week. He announced the agreement via social media on Thursday. “While others are talking about retirement, I just signed my new deal with the UFC today,” Gustafsson wrote on Instagram. “I am grateful, excited, and I will be fighting very soon.” The “retirement” inclusion may have been a dig at current light…

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UFC light heavyweight champion Daniel Cormier accepts head-coaching job with Gilroy High wrestling team

Active UFC champion Daniel Cormier has accepted a head-coaching role with the wrestling program at Gilroy High School, located south of San Jose, California. Cormier, 39, is the UFC’s light heavyweight champion and is preparing for a heavyweight title fight against Stipe Miocic at UFC 226 on July 7. He is also a team captain at American Kickboxing Academy in San Jose and a former U.S. Olympian. Mike Perry and Yancy Medeiros will be looking to get back on track when the welterweights meet as part of the UFC 226…

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What quick turnarounds mean for MMA fighters

Professional fighters get to compete only a few times a year, assuming they are in good favor with their promotion and not sidelined by any significant injuries. And those are both big “ifs” in the volatile sport of MMA. That means when fights are lost, otherwise confident competitors have to sit on those defeats for many months to come, potentially longer, before they’ll get a chance to redeem themselves and get back to winning ways. So it’s understandable that many fighters choose to get back in the cage as quickly…

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Kevin Lee discusses first camp without head coach, lightweight title picture

LAS VEGAS — Robert Follis may be gone, but UFC lightweight Kevin Lee says he’s never taken his late coach’s instructions more to heart than right now. Lee (16-3) will meet Edson Barboza in a five-round main event on Saturday, a UFC Fight Night in Atlantic City. Dustin Poirier’s thrilling TKO win against Justin Gaethje on Saturday night created even more madness in the UFC’s lightweight division. Is he ready for a title shot? What’s next for Khabib Nurmagomedov, Conor McGregor and other top contenders? We debate. Newly crowned UFC…

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Welterweights Mike Perry and Yancy Medeiros to meet in UFC 226

The UFC has added what should be a fan-friendly welterweight fight between Mike Perry and Yancy Medeiros to its UFC 226 lineup on July 7. Dustin Poirier’s thrilling TKO win against Justin Gaethje on Saturday night created even more madness in the UFC’s lightweight division. Is he ready for a title shot? What’s next for Khabib Nurmagomedov, Conor McGregor and other top contenders? We debate. Officials confirmed the matchup on Tuesday. The UFC 226 pay-per-view event will take place at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas. A heavyweight superfight between champion…

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What’s next for the UFC’s lightweight division? Conor McGregor Khabib Nurmagomedov Dustin Poirier

The UFC’s lightweight division is loaded right now. Khabib Nurmagomedov is champion, but just weeks ago that title belonged to Conor McGregor. And also Tony Ferguson before a freak injury sidelined him. Add in Eddie Alvarez and Dustin Poirier both coming off knockout wins and a crucial bout this weekend between Edson Barboza and Kevin Lee, and you have a top of a weight class that rivals any in the sport. What matchups should the UFC pursue in the coming months? We asked our panel — ESPN MMA reporter Brett…

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Dustin Poirier defeats Justin Gaethje in UFC main event, calls out Khabib Nurmagomedov

Down to just one leg (and one eye), UFC lightweight Dustin Poirier knocked out Justin Gaethje in the fourth round of a back-and-forth fight on Saturday. Poirier (23-5) rocked Gaethje with a left hand, then followed with punches until referee Herb Dean called it off at the 33-second mark of the round. The 155-pound bout headlined UFC Fight Night at Gila River Arena in Glendale, Arizona. It was an impressive finish, especially considering Poirier’s lead right leg was chewed up by leg kicks. His right eye was swollen shut from…

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Eddie Alvarez on Khabib Nurmagomedov’s title victory

Eddie Alvarez knows how this must look. The UFC crowned Khabib Nurmagomedov as its new lightweight champion last weekend, following a dominant showing over Al Iaquinta at UFC 223. UFC 223 provided a glimpse of the future, as Khabib Nurmagomedov and Rose Namajunas both impressed in wins. Who should they — and other fighters from that card — face next? Conor McGregor, arrested last week on assault and criminal mischief charges, still remains the UFC’s biggest star. Brett Okamoto looks at what’s next for their relationship and how it could…

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UFC’s Gaethje believes Alvarez loss cost him title fight

Justin Gaethje‘s coach, Trevor Wittman, still laughs as he recalls how happy his fighter was after the first professional loss of his career. Gaethje (18-1) suffered a knockout loss to Eddie Alvarez at UFC 218 in December and was transported to a Detroit hospital immediately after. Wittman has long expressed confidence Gaethje would handle a loss well, if it ever happened to come. And he was proved correct that night. Newly crowned UFC lightweight champion Khabib Nurmagomedov looked unbeatable against Al Iaquinta. But Eddie Alvarez, who hopes to fight for…

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