Cris Cyborg faces Leslie Smith in a rematch, Ciryl Gane vs. Alexander Volkov gets booked and more — here is your fight announcement roundup for Saturday, April 3.
Cris Cyborg vs. Leslie Smith II set for Bellator event in May
At Bellator 255, it was announced that Cris Cyborg and Leslie Smith will do battle for the former's Bellator featherweight title.
The two fought back in 2016 at UFC 198. In Cyborg's UFC debut, she beat Smith via TKO. Cyborg is currently on a three-fight win streak, while Smith is 2-1 since joining Bellator.
“I believe in five years she’s going to be a better fighter. More training, more working and fighting," Cyborg said in a press release. "More experience. The first fight was very fast, so I think this one is going to be a longer fight. She’s a warrior. She likes to fight and it’s going to be nice to fight somebody like this."
Ciryl Gane vs. Alexander Volkov at June 26 UFC event
It was recently announced that top heavyweights Ciryl Gan and Alexander Volkov will face off in a pivotal heavyweight bout, per ESPN.
The undefeated Gane, ranked fourth in the heavyweight division, beat Jairzinho Rozenstruik via unanimous decision in February. Ranked fifth, Volkov is on a two-fight win streak.
Per sources, Ciryl Gane (@ciryl_gane) vs. Alexander Volkov (@AlexDragoVolkov) will headline UFC Fight Night on June 26. Big fight for both. And possibly of note, Derrick Lewis still without a dance partner as of now. Top of that division still in the air. https://t.co/K6Q1Rs0jxA— Brett Okamoto (@bokamotoESPN) April 3, 2021
T.J. Laramie out of May 1 UFC event against Damon Jackson
We will have to wait another time to see T.J. Laramie back in action, as the featherweight will no longer be fighting Damon Jackson. Laramie announced his exit from the May 1 event but did not give an exact reason for his departure.
Juan Espino vs. Alexandr Romanov at April 17 UFC event
Juan Espino will meet Alexandr Romanov at the UFC event on April 17.
The fight was first reported thanks to US TV listings and both have confirmed the bout on social media. Espino, the winner of season 28 of The Ultimate Fighter, is 2-0 since joining the UFC and is on an eight-fight win streak. The undefeated Romanov is also 2-0 since joining the UFC.
Abdul Razak Alhassan vs. Jacob Malkoun at April 17 UFC event
The UFC announced that Abdul Razak Alhassan and Jacob Malkoun will face off in welterweight action on April 17.
Alhassan is on a two-fight losing streak, while Malkoun lost his UFC debut to Phil Hawes in October. Robert Whittaker vs. Kelvin Gastelum is currently scheduled to main event that show.
Kevin Aguilar vs. Tucker Lutz booked for UFC 262
The UFC announced via a press release that Kevin Aguilar and Tucker Lutz will face off in a featherweight bout at UFC 262.
This is a big fight for Aguilar, who is on a three-fight losing streak. The former LFA Featherweight Champion made his UFC debut during Dana White's Contender Series in 2018. "Top Gun" Lutz is also a Dana White Contender Series (2020) alum, going 2-0 after fighting for Shogun Fights. His only loss in twelve contests was his pro debut. UFC 262 will be headlined by Charles Oliveira vs. Michael Chandler for the UFC lightweight championship.
Michel Prazeres vs. Shavkat Rakhmonov booked for June 26 UFC event.
Following a suspension, Michel Prazeres will face off against Shavkat Rakhmonov on June 26. The fight was first reported by AG Fight.
Prazeres last fought in 2019, losing to Ismail Naurdiev which ended an eight-fight win streak. He was suspended later in the year after testing positive for anabolic agents in two out-of-competition samples. The undefeated Rakhmonov made his UFC debut in October, beating Alex Oliveira via submission.
Charles Rosa vs. Justin Jaynes booked for June 26 UFC event
MMA Junkie was one of the first to report that Charles Rosa and Justin Jaynes will compete in a featherweight bout on June 26.
Rosa is 2-2 in his last four fights, last fighting Darrick Minner in a losing effort in February. Jaynes is currently on a three-fight losing streak, losing two in a row via TKO.
Lupita Godinez vs. Jessica Penne booked for April 17 UFC event
LFA strawweight champion Lupita Godinez will be replacing Hannah Goldy on April 17 against Jessica Penne. MMA Junkie first reported the news.
The undefeated Godinez last beat Vanesa Demopoulos at LFA 94 to win the title. Penne is on a three-fight losing streak and hasn't fought since 2017 thanks to a lengthy battle with USADA. Goldy is out of the fight due to undisclosed reasons.
Zarah Fairn vs. Josiane Nunes booked for April 17 UFC event
L’Equipe was the first to report that Zarah Fairn will face Josiane Nunes on April 17.
Fairn is on a two-fight losing streak and is 3-2 in her last five fights. She is moving down from the featherweight division to bantamweight. Nunes is making her UFC debut and is on a six-fight win streak.
Erin Blanchfield vs. Norma Dumont Booked for April 10 UFC event
After signing with the UFC, Erin Blanchfield will face off against Norma Dumont on April 10 at the second UFC show on ABC. ESPN's Ariel Helwani reported that Blanchfield will be replacing Bea Malecki, who had to pull out of the fight.
"The Immortal " Dumont last fought in November, beating Ashlee Evans-Smith via unanimous decision. A member of Invicta FC, Blanchfield is on a three-fight win streak. She announced her UFC signing via social media.