The headline event for UFC 300 on April 13 in Las Vegas has not been set, leaving MMA fans guessing who it could be.
Dricus du Plessis was the latest name linked with topping the bill after his victory over Sean Strickland at UFC 297 to win the UFC Middleweight Title. But the South African recently confirmed that a date had not been set for his first title defense. Du Plessis is still recovering from the slight knocks, bumps and bruises he sustained in his split decision win. While the champion wanted to appear at UFC 300, he recognized that recovery was the most important thing.
“I think UFC 300 is obviously going to be a milestone event. I think it’s going to be great. Every time you have the UFC 100, UFC 200, and now 300, all of are massive events and the pay-per-views are insane, it’s a massive hype, and I would love to be part of that, but not if it’s going to mean that I’m not going to be fully recovered. Defending my title is much more important to me than being on this milestone event,” du Plessis said
Once du Plessis has recovered, he will target a title defense against Israel Adesanya. They were on course to face each other before Izzy lost to Strickland at UFC 293. Their rivalry intensified after du Plessis promised to be the first African to win the belts, having a dig at Adesanya’s New Zealand and Nigerian background. Now that he has a title, du Plessis wanted Izzy next. But if that fight is off the table, he was open to rematching Strickland.
“If the UFC decides they want to do Strickland two, I’m completely happy with that. If the fans say, no, that’s the fight they want, let’s do it. I honestly think the second fight will be a lot easier than the first one,” du Plessis added
Tom Aspinall also appears unlikely to fight at UFC 300 after wanting to face two-weight world champion Alex Pereira. Following his serious knee injury against Curtis Blaydes in 2022, Aspinall has bounced back with first-round KO wins over Marcin Tybura and Sergei Pavlovich, respectively. The win over Pavlovich was for the UFC Interim Heavyweight Title.
Aspinall’s attempts at making the UFC strip Jon Jones of his UFC Heavyweight Title after his injury have failed, leaving him to target Pereira. Pereira recovered from losing his middleweight title against Adesanya by moving to light heavyweight and beating Jiri Prochazka for the vacant title. While Aspinall wants to face the Brazilian, the Brit has not heard back from the UFC.
“On my end, I’ve heard nothing so far. As I’ve said plenty of times before, I’m not one to turn down fights. I’m not particularly looking for that fight [against Alex Pereira], but if it’s available and they offer it to me, I will take it. I’m ready to fight,” Aspinall revealed
With April fast approaching, White’s announcement cannot come soon enough.
Izzy/DDP gotta be the main event
— NigeAv MMA (@NigeAvMMA) February 1, 2024
This would be a good fight. I'd have to give it Tom, he's fast and KOs heavy weights. Israel KOed Alex, Alex doesn't have the chin for Tom
— PRSOM88 (@Matthew12550711) February 7, 2024
Pereira x Izzy main event
— Ian Pierre (@IanPierre071) February 1, 2024