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Elizabeth City
Tuesday, April 20, 2021

Fight booking wire (March 29-April 4): Erin Blanchfield signs, meets Norma Dumont at UFC on ABC 2

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MMA fight announcements are hard to follow. With so many outlets and channels available, it’s nearly impossible to organize.

But here at MMA Junkie, we’ve got you covered.

Each week, we’ll compile all the new fight bookings right here – in one spot. Worried you missed a UFC or Bellator matchup, a playoff pairing for the PFL, or a title fight scheduled for ONE or LFA?

Our fight booking wire will keep tabs on it all and will update any time we’ve got new matchups – so you’ll want to come back throughout the week to see the latest.

Here are fight announcements that have been broken or confirmed by MMA Junkie for this week, March 29-April 4:

Sep 28, 2019; Copenhagen, DEN; (Editor’s Note: Graphic Content) Alessio Di Chirico (red gloves) fights Makhmud Muradov (not pictured) during UFC Fight Night at Royal Arena. Mandatory Credit: Per Haljestam-USA TODAY Sports

Middleweights Alessio Di Chirico and Roman Dolize are set to fight at a UFC Fight Night event on June 5. Di Chirico (13-5 MMA, 4-5 UFC) is coming off a head kick knockout victory over Joaquin Buckley in January. The win snapped a three-fight losing skid for the Italian. As for Dolidze (8-1 MMA, 2-1 UFC), he debuted at middleweight March 20 when he lost a short-notice unanimous decision to Trevin Giles.

– Confirmed by Nolan King and John Morgan, March 29 at 6:40 p.m. ET (first reported by BJPenn.com)

Nov 2, 2019; New York, NY, USA; Darren Till (blue gloves) defeats Kelvin Gastelum (red gloves) during UFC 244 at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Sarah Stier-USA TODAY Sports

Darren Till is out of his UFC on ABC 2 headlining bout vs. Marvin Vettori after he suffered a collarbone injury in training. Till (18-3-1 MMA, 6-3-1 UFC) has pulled out of back-to-back fights, while Vettori (16-4-1 MMA, 6-2-1 UFC) continues to be plagued by opponent withdrawals.

– Reported by Nolan King, March 30 at 4:16 p.m. ET (cancellation first reported by ESPN)

Oct 21, 2017; Gdansk, Poland; Oskar Piechota (red gloves) competes against Jonathan Wilson (blue gloves) during UFC Fight Night at Ergo Arena. Mandatory Credit: Per Haljestam-USA TODAY Sports

Light heavyweights Jose Augusto and Jonathan Wilson will face off this Friday at Bellator 255. The light heavyweight fight will be a late addition to the event’s preliminary card. Augusto (6-2 MMA, 0-0 BMMA), a member of “Pitbull Brothers” makes his promotional debut. Meanwhile, Wilson (9-3 MMA, 0-0 UFC) looks to continue his unbeaten streak since his UFC departure in 2017.

– Announced by Bellator, March 30 at 5:33 p.m. ET

Nate Diaz is back and set to compete for the first time since November 2019. At UFC 262, Diaz (20-12 MMA, 18-11 UFC) will partake as one half of a historic five-round welterweight fight against Leon Edwards. The bout is scheduled as the pay-per-view’s co-main event, which makes it the first five-round fight that is not a headliner or title fight. Diaz is 3-2 in his most recent six, while Edwards (18-3 MMA, 10-2 UFC) won eight in a row before fighting to a no contest with Belal Muhammad on March 13.

– Confirmed by Mike Bohn, March 30 at 11:03 p.m. ET (first reported by ESPN)

After missing weight in back-to-back losses at 170 pounds, Abdul Razak Alhassan (10-3 MMA, 4-3 UFC) will move back up to middleweight to meet Jacob Malkoun (4-1 MMA, 0-1 UFC) at UFC on ESPN 22 on April 17.

Malkoun, who was stopped by Phil Hawes in his promotional debut at UFC 254 this past October, will be in search of his first octagon win when he once again shares the card with teammate Robert Whittaker.

– Announced by UFC, March 30 at 9:30 p.m. ET

Zarah Fairn dos Santos (6-4, 0-2 UFC), the only female French fighter on the UFC roster, will welcome Josiane Nunes (7-1 MMA, 0-0 UFC) to the octagon when they square off in a bantamweight bout at UFC on ESPN 22 on April 17.

After getting stopped in back-to-back fights against former title challengers Megan Anderson and Felicia Spencer, dos Santos will be in search of her first octagon win when she meets Brazil’s Nunes, who’s won her past six in a row, five by way stoppage.

– Confirmed by Josiane Nunes on social media, March 31 at 9:20 a.m. ET (first reported by L’Equipe)

Mar 30, 2019; Philadelphia, PA, USA; Enrique Barzola (red gloves) fights Kevin Aguilar (blue gloves) during UFC Fight Night at Wells Fargo Arena. Aguilar won the fight. Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

Kevin Aguilar (17-4 MMA, 2-3 UFC) is set to take on promotional newcomer Tucker Lutz (11-1 MMA, 0-0 UFC) in a lightweight bout at UFC 262.

Aguilar won his first two UFC fights, which gave him a run of nine straight victories. But it’s been rough sailing since then. Aguilar has dropped three straight bouts with decision setbacks to Dan Ige and Charles Rosa wrapped around a TKO loss to Zubaira Tukhugov.

Lutz has won 11 straight fights since he dropped his pro debut in 2015. Most recently, he had two wins on Dana White’s Contender Series in 2020 over Chase Gibson and Sherrard Blackledge to usher his way into the UFC officially.

– Announced by UFC, March 31 at 2 p.m. ET

LAS VEGAS, NEVADA – AUGUST 01: (R-L) Lando Vannata punches Bobby Green in their lightweight fight during the UFC Fight Night event at UFC APEX on August 01, 2020 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Chris Unger/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)

Mike Grundy (12-2 MMA, 1-1 UFC) and Lando Vannata (11-5-2 MMA, 3-5-2 UFC) have been booked for a lightweight fight at UFC 262 on May 15 in Houston.

It’s been a constant up-and-down run for Vannata in the UFC – and a couple times, neither up nor down, but down the middle with draws. He has yet to string together two straight UFC wins – but also has avoided having two straight losses thanks to draws with Bobby Green and Matt Frevola. In 2020, Vannata took a unanimous decision from Yancy Medeiros at UFC on ESPN+ 25, but dropped a decision to Green in a rematch in August.

Grundy won his UFC debut in March 2019 with a second-round TKO of Nad Narimani. He finally returned in July 2020, but dropped a decision to Movsar Evloev. He was scheduled to fight Nik Lentz in January at UFC on ABC 1, but had to pull out of the fight.

– Announced by UFC, March 31 at 2 p.m. ET

Lupita Godinez

LFA strawweight champion Lupita Godinez has signed with the UFC and will take on a former title challenger in her promotional debut.

Godinez (5-0 MMA, 0-0 UFC) is set to meet Jessica Penne (12-5 MMA, 1-3 UFC) at UFC on ESPN 22, which takes place April 17 at the UFC Apex in Las Vegas. Godinez, a 27-year-old Mexican fighter, is unbeaten in her pro MMA career. She won the strawweight title in her most recent outing when she beat Vanessa Demopoulos by majority decision at LFA 94.

Penne, who originally was set to meet Hannah Goldy this past Saturday at UFC 260, will make her long-awaited return to the octagon. Her bout with Goldy was rebooked for April 17, but Goldy was forced to withdraw due to unknown reasons. Penne is coming off a nearly four-year layoff due to multiple injuries and a lengthy battle with the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency.

– First reported by Nolan King on April 1 at 11:20 a.m. ET

Erin Blanchfield (Image via Invicta FC)

Norma Dumont was set to take on Bea Malecki at UFC on ABC 2 later this month, but now she’ll meet a highly touted new signee, instead.

With Malecki (2-0 MMA, 2-0 UFC) out, Dumont (5-1 MMA, 1-1 UFC) now will take on 21-year-old prospect Erin Blanchfield (6-1 MMA, 0-0 UFC) in a women’s bantamweight bout, Blanchfield’s management told MMA Junkie on Thursday. UFC on ABC 2 takes place April 10 at the UFC Apex in Las Vegas.

Blanchfield, a decorated grappler, will bring a three-fight winning streak into the bout. In her career so far, she’s 4-1 under the Invicta FC banner and also has a pair of wins for CFFC.

Dumont started her career 4-0 before a first-round knockout loss to Megan Anderson in February 2020. She rebounded this past November with a decision win over Ashlee Evans-Smith.

– Confirmed by Nolan King on April 1 at 10:40 a.m. ET

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