Fighters dropping from bantamweight to new division
UFC on Fox 3, just announced for New Jersey in May, has a second fight added to the lineup – and it will come in the promotion’s newest division.
John Dodson and Darren Uyenoyama will both drop from bantamweight to the UFC’s new flyweight division (125 pounds) and meet at the May 5 card in East Rutherford, N.J. The UFC announced the bout late Tuesday night, saying verbal agreements are in place for the fight.
Dodson (12-5, 1-0 UFC) is no stranger to the flyweight division. The Greg Jackson-trained fighter competed in the division before moving up to bantamweight in order to compete on Season 14 of “The Ultimate Fighter.” He went on to win the bantamweight crown for TUF 14 last month with a Knockout of the Night victory over T.J. Dillashaw in the first round. Dodson said after the fight he likely would return to flyweight once the UFC introduced the division – which it did the week after his TUF 14 Finale victory. The UFC’s flyweight division debuts in March in Sydney, Australia, with the start of a four-man tournament to determine its first champion.
Unlike Dodson, Uyenoyama (7-3, 1-0 UFC) will be moving to flyweight for the first time. The former Strikeforce and Dream fighter dropped from featherweight to bantamweight for his UFC debut in November at UFC on Fox: Velasquez vs. Dos Santos and notched a unanimous decision victory over Norifumi “Kid” Yamamoto, who was a better than 4-to-1 favorite in the fight. Now Uyenoyama will make it two fights, two weight classes.
UFC on Fox 3 will take place at the Izod Center in East Rutherford and likely will have a format similar to Saturday’s UFC on Fox 2 card in Chicago, which features a two-hour main card live broadcast with a guaranteed three fights. Late Tuesday, the UFC announced the first bout for the card will be a lightweight contenders fight between Jim Miller and Nate Diaz. Miller is just a few days off of his submission win over Melvin Guillard at UFC on FX in Nashville, Tenn. And Diaz upset Donald Cerrone at UFC 141 last month with some of the most precise boxing in UFC history.