Several high-profile matches may have just been inadvertently leaked by the UFC when their matchmaking board revealed the promotion’s plans for the coming months.
During an episode of The Pivotal Podcasthosted by Channing Crowder, Fred Taylor & DC and RC co-host Ryan Clark, fans got a rare glimpse of the UFC’s confidential board of directors when Dana White stepped into the executive meeting room. The painting has often been referenced by White in interviews as he looks up at the painting, which is usually out of public view.
Everything changed on Tuesday. Based on the matches listed on the board, here are some of the fights the UFC currently has planned for the coming months:
UFC 276: July 2, 2022
Israel Adesanya vs. Jared Cannonier
Adesanya vs. Cannonier was already widely expected looking at the current middleweight landscape. Cannonier defeated Brunson at UFC 271 in February in what was widely considered a No. 1 contender fight.
There is currently no word on potential obstacles to making the July 2 date a reality.
Khamzat Chimaev vs. Nate Diaz
Diaz has been pushing for a fight for several weeks now to complete his current contract with the UFC. Diaz’s frustrations even led him to publicly call for his release. The UFC reportedly offered Diaz a fight against Chimaev in the past, but Diaz rejected the fight.
If this chart is up to date, it means the UFC has not waived a potential Chimaev/Diaz matchup as the final fight on Diaz’s current deal.
Sean O’Malley vs. Petro Munhoz
In March, O’Malley dropped Munhoz as a potential opponent. Both men are currently unbooked.
Robbie Lawler vs. Bryan Barberena (confirmed)
Bryan Barberena has confirmed that this fight has been set for July 2.
UFC Fight Night: July 9, 2022
Thiago Santos vs Jamahal Hill
Both men are ranked in the top 10. Santos is ranked No. 6 and Jamahal Hill is ranked No. 10. Neither man is currently booked.
UFC London: July 23, 2022
Paddy Pimblett vs Ottman Azaitar
The UFC recently announced its return to London for July 23 in a card headlined by Curtis Blaydes and Britain’s Tom Aspinall. Pimblett appeared on the final card of UFC London on March 19, earning a submission victory over Kazula Vargas.
Azaitar currently has a 13-0 pro record, most recently beating Kharma Worthy via TKO last September.
UFC 277: July 30, 2022
Jon Jones vs. Stipe Miocic
A fight between Jones and Miocic has been rumored for months, and UFC President Dana White has bluntly said the fight makes sense.
Of note, however, is Jon Jones’ recent claim that Miocic has requested the fight be pushed back to September and “Bones” stating he would be happy to oblige so Miocic has “no excuses”. Thus, it is unknown if the fight is still currently scheduled for July or if the advice has yet to reflect these latest developments.
Anthony Smith vs. Magomed Ankalaev
Last month, Anthony Smith expressed his willingness to face Ankalaev, even stating that the Russian is not the ‘boogeyman’ he is made out to be. Both fighters are currently ranked in the top 5 at light heavyweight, with Ankalev at No. 4 and Smith at No. 5.
MMA News will keep you up to date on all the latest developments regarding each of the blockbuster fights above! So be sure to keep it locked here at MMANews.com, a major source for MMA news since 2002!