UFC 266: Volkanovski vs Ortega airs live on pay-per-view from T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas on Saturday September 25, which makes it Sunday September 26 in the UK and Australia. Today the promotion announced three changes on the card, including a highly anticipated return of Nick Diaz.
Former Strikeforce welterweight champion Nick Diaz (26-9, 2 NC) is back in action for the first time in over six years. He is set to face former UFC 170-pound champion Robbie Lawler (28-15, 1 NC) in the rematch. Their first fight held 17 years ago at UFC 47 ended in favor of Diaz who scored the win by knockout in the second round.
Diaz vs Lawler rematch was initially set to be contested at welterweight. The five-round battle will now proceed at middleweight.
Check out below what Dana White said on The Jim Rome Show regarding the weight class change.
Among other changes, Karl Roberson no longer partakes in UFC 266 due to illness. He is replaced by Dana White’s Contender Series veteran Cody Brundage (6-1), who faces fellow-promotional newcomer Nick Maximov (6-0) at middleweight.
Women’s MMA bout between Manon Fiorot and Mayra Bueno Silva is no longer featured on UFC 266 fight card due to COVID-19 protocols. The flyweight contest has been rescheduled for UFC Vegas 40: Vieira vs Tate on October 16.
In the main event of UFC 266 Alexander Volkanovski (22-2) defends his featherweight title against No.2-ranked 145-pound contender Brian Ortega (15-1, 1 NC). In the co-main event Valentina Shevchenko (21-3) defends her flyweight title against former Invicta FC bantamweight champion and No.3-ranked contender Lauren Murphy (15-4).
The current UFC 266 fight card can be found below.
UFC 266 fight card
- Alexander Volkanovski vs. Brian Ortega – Volkanovski’s UFC featherweight title
- Valentina Shevchenko vs. Lauren Murphy – Shevchenko’s UFC women’s flyweight title
- Nick Diaz vs. Robbie Lawler
- Curtis Blaydes vs. Jairzinho Rozenstruik
- Jessica Andrade vs. Cynthia Calvillo
- Marlon Moraes vs. Merab Dvalishvili
- Dan Hooker vs. Nasrat Haqparast
- Shamil Abdurakhimov vs. Chris Daukaus
- Roxanne Modafferi vs. Taila Santos
Early Preliminary card
- Uros Medic vs. Jalin Turner
- Nick Maximov vs. Cody Brundage
- Matthew Semelsberger vs. Martin Sano
- Jonathan Pearce vs. Omar Morales