The UFC now has a title fight booked for UFC 230, and it’s surprising to say the least.
As first reported by Brett Okamoto of ESPN, Valentina Shevchenko will take on Sijara Eubanks for the vacant women’s flyweight title, at UFC 230 on Nov. 3. At Madison Square Garden.
The announcement of this fight was largely unexpected due to earlier reports of Shevchenko taking on former strawweight champion Joanna Jedrzejczyk at UFC 231, and the relatively low profile of Sijara Eubanks.
UFC 230 with be the third card at Madison Square Garden (MSG) for the UFC. Each of the UFC’s previous MSG’s outings (UFC 205 and UFC 217) have featured three title fights, and mega-stars Conor McGregor and Georges St-Pierre.
However, currently there are no available incumbent champions to headline the event.
Last week, both Nate Diaz and Dustin Poirier lobbied via social media to have their scheduled lightweight bout, become the inaugural champion bout at a newly created 165lb division; despite their pleas, the UFC has not indicated that they are creating a new division.
Both Schevchenko and Eubanks have had flyweight title fights against former/inaugural women’s champion Nicco Montano canceled.
Eubanks was a co-finalist on “TUF 28” in November 2017 where she was slated to face Montano for the inaugural championship, however Eubanks was forced to withdraw due to health concerns. Montano would go on to defeat alternate Roxanne Modafferi to capture the title.
Schevchenko was slated to become Montano’s first challenger at UFC 228 in September, before Montano withdrew for medical concerns. Montano was subsequently stripped of the title.