Fights come together fast these days, and if you blink, you can easily miss them. In Fight Roundup, we bring you the latest reported matchups to keep you up to date with what’s on the horizon.
All bouts featured have been officially announced or confirmed with MMA Fighting’s Guilherme Cruz, Mike Heck, and Damon Martin via sources with knowledge of the matchups.
Heavyweights Parter Porter (13-7) and Justin Tafa (5-3) will face off in Tafa’s backyard.
The matchup has been added to UFC 284, which takes place Feb. 12 at RAC Arena in Perth, Australia. Tafa, a New Zealand native, resides in Brisbane where he trains with Tafa Fight Gang Team. The matchup was first reported by MMA Junkie.
Kiwi heavyweight Tafa is coming off a highlight-reel performance at UFC Vegas 45, where he knocked out Harry Hunsucker via head kick. Unfortunately, he made news for another reason before the fight when he became the first heavyweight in UFC history to miss weight. The gaff made him ineligible for a performance bonus, but his win did snap a two-fight skid.
Porter is on the rebound after seeing a three-fight winning streak snapped in his most recent appearance, a UFC Vegas 55 meeting with Jailton Almeida that ended in a first-round submission. Prior to that, he outpointed Josh Parisian, Chase Sherman and Alan Baudot, respectively.
Tyson Pedro vs. Zhang Mingyang
Another Aussie is headed to UFC 284 when Tyson Pedro (9-3) meets Zhang Mingyang (16-6) at the Perth, Australia, pay-per-view event. The matchup was first reported by MMA Ecosystem.
Pedro, a City Kickboxing vet, has won back-to-back fights by knockout, having stopped Ike Villanueva and Harry Hunsucker in his most recent outings.
Mingyang punched his UFC ticket with a win on Road to UFC, a tournament held over the summer to recruit top Asian talent to the octagon. At Road to UFC 1, he stopped George Tokkos in the first round to pick up his ninth straight win.
Billy Goff vs. Themba Gorimbo
In a matchup of UFC newcomers, Contender Series vet Billy Goff (8-2) fights former EFC champ Themba Gorimbo (10-3) at a UFC event slated for Feb. 18. The event’s location and venue has not been made official yet.
Goff and Gorimbo’s management firm, Iridium Sports, announced the matchup on Twitter.
Goff punched his ticket to the UFC with a first-round knockout of Shimon Smotritsky on the Contender Series. He currently enjoys a six-fight winning streak headed into the winter event.
Gorimbo is six months removed from his most recent win, a decision over Julio Rodrigues under the Fury FC banner that put him back in the win column after a decision loss snapped a three-fight winning streak on the international circuit.
The “Black Wolf” Nazim Sadykhov (7-1) will take on the younger version of “The Phenom,” Evan Elder (7-1), this winter. The lightweights will meet at a UFC event scheduled for Feb. 18 at a venue and location to be announced. MMA Junkie was the first to report the matchup.
Contender Series vet Sadykhov punched his ticket to the UFC with a third-round knockout of Ahmad Suhail Hassanzada, which extended his current winning streak to seven fights.
Elder, meanwhile, hopes to get back on the right track after a loss to Preston Parsons in his octagon debut, which took place at UFC Vegas 52. It was his first setback as a professional in eight bouts.