Thursday, January 21, 2021

Yan vs. Sterling Title Fight Off of UFC 256

UFC 256 is going through some changes with their main event according to multiple reports. The bantamweight title fight between champion Petr Yan and Aljamain Sterling has been postponed until February according to an initial report from MMA Island and confirmed later by MMA Fighting. 

The news seemed to emerge not long after UFC 255 was over and during the post-fight press conference, Dana White said he would like to turn around flyweight champion Deiveson Figueiredo and Brandon Moreno soon. He went as far as to say “We’re going to keep him [Figueiredo] here” so it may have been news that had just gotten to White at that time. Both fighters verbally agreed to face one another as well.

As luck would have it, both Figueiredo and Moreno picked up first-round finishes in both of their matches at UFC 255. Figueiredo submitted title challenger Alex Perez in the first round, and Moreno won against Brandon Royval with a first-round TKO. Both seemed to get their wins with no damage and being ready and in town, the situation seems to make it an easy choice as a replacement main event. 

Yan’s removal was cited as “personal issues” but Sterling seemed to handle the news well based on his reactions on social media. “Everything happens for a reason. I hope everything is good with you and your family,” Sterling sent to Yan in a tweet, adding, “We will settle our business when you can be 100% focused and ready to give the fans the best show we can. See you soon.”

UFC 256 would be the final pay-per-view in a year that has proven challenging for the UFC, MMA, and the entire world due to COVID-19. However, with matchmaking and logistics being one of the biggest hurdles in putting on events this year, this seems like a no-brainer.

How do you think UFC 256 will turn out?