FERGUSON AND LEE MEET FOR THE INTERIM LIGHTWEIGHT TITLE AT UFC 216
The owner of the longest winning streak in the UFC lightweight division finally gets his shot at gold when No. 2 Tony Ferguson collides with one of the sport’s most exciting young stars for the division’s interim title. No. 7 Kevin Lee has the same aspirations as his opponent, while ultimately staring down the road at a potential unification bout against current champion Conor McGregor. In the co-main event, No. 2 heavyweight Fabricio Werdum looks to get back in the title hunt when he clashes with knockout artist and No. 6-ranked Derrick Lewis. UFC 216 takes place on Saturday, Oct. 7 at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas. The event will air live on Pay-Per-View.
Currently on a nine-fight win streak, Ferguson believes a title shot has been a long time coming. During his streak, “El Cucuy” has racked up post-fight bonuses in each of his last five bouts, including Fight of the Night honors in his most recent win against former lightweight champion, Rafael Dos Anjos. Ferguson is primed to capitalize on the opportunity and be a part of history, but standing in his way is the always dangerous Lee. Though nine years younger than his foe, Lee has shown tremendous growth every time he enters the Octagon, including a first-round submission win in his most recent bout against the then No. 7-ranked Michael Chiesa.
At 40 years old, Werdum is one of the best mixed martial artists ever. The former UFC champion has defeated some of the best heavyweights in history, with wins over Cain Velazquez, Alistair Overeem and Fedor Emelianenko, and he is preparing for yet another title run. Clashing with the always dangerous Lewis will be no easy task. With 16 of his 18 victories coming by way of knockout, and after scoring wins over top contenders Travis Browne and Roy Nelson, Lewis is looking to establish himself as a title contender.
Two of the UFC’s most popular female fighters look to revitalize their careers by moving to the women’s flyweight division. No. 10 strawweight Paige VanZant is renowned for her all-around athleticism and is an electrifying performer with two knockouts and two submissions on her resume. Her 125-pound debut will be anything but easy, as she faces veteran Jessica Eye. Hoping the brand new division will revitalize her career, Eye has always been most comfortable fighting at 125 lbs. and is excited to compete again at her natural weight.
- A heavyweight bout featuring knockout artists Walt Harris and the equally dangerous Mark Godbeer.
- Top-15 lightweights Beneil Dariush looks to ascend the rankings against Evan Dunham who is on a four fight win streak.
- Dynamic lightweights Will Brooks and Nik Lentz jockey for position in the stacked 155-pound division.
- Two impressive winning streaks are on the line when the durable Tom Duquesnoy challenges the always dangerous Cody Stamann.
- Two strawweight women look for their first win in the UFC as Pearl Gonzalez challenges Poliana Botelho.
- The unpredictable Lando Vannata looks to prove himself against MMA veteran Bobby Green .
- No 10 flyweight John Moraga hopes to continue his ascent through the rankings against the undefeated No. 15 flyweight Magomed Bibulatov.
- No. 12 middleweight and UFC veteran Thales Leites faces a formidable challenge against Las Vegas’ own Brad Tavares.
- It will be a battle of explosive flyweight athletes when Matt Schnell meets Marco Beltran.
UFC 216 will air live on PPV at 10 p.m. ET/7 p.m. PT on Saturday, Oct. 7, with the prelims kicking off the evening on FS1 at 8 p.m. ET/5 p.m. PT and on UFC FIGHT PASS
® at 7 p.m. ET/4 p.m. PT.