On March 11, former bantamweight champion Petr Yan will compete in the main event of a UFC Fight Night against rising talent Merab Dvalishvili.
Due to unclear circumstances, Kyler Phillips will not compete in his scheduled bantamweight battle against Davey Grant, which has cost the event a main card matchup. Raphael Assuncao, who the UFC happily discovered on short notice, will take Grant’s place in a bout that has all the makings of a barnburner.
Assuncao just ended a discouraging four-fight losing streak with a decision victory over Victory Henry in October. The Brazilian veteran, despite his current struggles, has previously defeated the top bantamweight competitors such Rob Font, Marlon Moraes, Aljamain Sterling, Pedro Munhoz, and T.J. Dillashaw.
Grant, meanwhile, recently snapped a two-fight losing streak by stopping Louis Smolka in the third round in May of last year. ‘Dangerous,’ one of the hardest-hitting fighters in the category, was on a three-fight winning streak in 2021 before suffering back-to-back ‘Fight of the Night’ decision defeats to Marlon Vera and Adrian Yanez.
Aljamain Sterling predicts how Petr Yan vs. Merab Dvalishvili will play out
While Petr Yan was defeated by Aljamain Sterling via disqualification at UFC 259, “Funkmaster” defeated Yan in a fair fight to retain his bantamweight title.
After decisively defeating Yan, Sterling thinks he has given Merab Dvalishvili the strategy to defeat “No Mercy” on March 11.
According to “Funkmaster,” if Dvalishvili concentrates enough, he will largely be able to control the pace of the battle. On his YouTube channel, the UFC bantamweight champion stated:
He’ll have to contend with Merab’s battle the entire time. Merab is in trouble in this fight, but Petr Yan is also in danger in this one. A game of inches when you’re at the top of your game. Merab only needs to be really focused, and I believe he already knows how to defeat him. He has Sean O’Malley’s striker’s blueprint. He was given a wrestler’s blueprint by me.