Dana White has revealed a total of three new world-title bouts for UFC 295 and UFC 296.
In an action-packed card coming up at the back end of the year, Jiri Prochazka will take on Alex Pereira for the vacant light heavyweight title on November 11th, 2023, at UFC 295. This will be part of the wider Jon Jones and Stipe Miocic headlining bout. Pereira will be hoping to add another world title to his collection, following his middleweight exploits prior to his loss to Israel Adesanya. The bout is the Brazilian’s second at light heavyweight after his win over Jan Blachowicz. His opponent, Prochazka, is not going to be a pushover. The MMA fighter has won his last three bouts, all three of which came by way of stoppages.
Meanwhile, Leon Edwards will have a second defense of his welterweight title against Colby Covington at UFC 296 on December 16th, 2023 in a headlining fight. Edwards’ latest bout was a victory over Kamaru Usman as he defended the belt for the first time. As for Covington, he has had a period of inactivity. His last fight was a win over Jorge Masvidal in 2022 as the latter has since then gone on to retire.
And to round things off, UFC 296 will also feature Alexandre Pantoja and Brandon Royval in a rematch of their 2021 encounter as the co-main event. During their first fight, Pantoja secured a second-round victory via a submission. And this time around, Pantoja will defend his flyweight title.
Aside from those title fights, White also plans on having yearly UFC Noche events on Mexican Independence Day following the success of the flyweight title fight between Alexa Grasso and Valentina Shevchenko. Despite Mike Bell’s controversial 10-8 scorecard overshadowing the event, it turned out to be the UFC’s most-viewed event of all-time on ESPN+. And that interest has been enough for White to make it a regular thing moving forward.
“Noche UFC was the most-watched Fight Night of all-time on ESPN+. Think about that. It generated 167 million total minutes, and it did three times the average viewership minutes watched on the Spanish feed. Killed it. It was an incredible success. I will get that date every year from now on, yes. I will go that date every [year]. I don’t care if somebody here in town gets the date at the [T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas], I’ll go in an opposing arena and go head-to-head with them next year. I’m doing this for the rest of my reign here,” White