A slew of UFC fan favorites and contenders are confirmed to be back in action later this month after UFC president Dana White announced stacked line-ups for the upcoming UFC Fight Night cards scheduled for June 20 and June 27. White revealed the information to UFC host Jon Anik Friday afternoon on the ESPN MMA YouTube channel.
The action is set to include stalwart heavyweight mauler Curtis Blaydes taking on lanky Russian striker Alexander Volkov in the main event of the June 20 card as well as former interim lightweight champion Dustin Poirer locking horns with top-ranked contender Dan Hooker in the main event of the June 27 card.
Both of those fights should be serious barnburners, but they aren’t the only important divisional matchups on the way later this month.
In total, 17 ranked fighters compete across both nights. Blaydes-Volkov features 10 ranked fighters on the card while Poirer-Hooker has seven.
You can see the full lineups for each of the UFC’s announced cards for June 20 and June 27 below.
The fight card on June 20 includes a slew of solid fights.
June 27 also looks stacked.
Both events are scheduled to take place at UFC APEX in Las Vegas, Nevada.
You can watch the entire segment below.
UFC Fight Night: Blaydes-Volkov on June 20
Blaydes vs. Volkov is an important matchup in the heavyweight division.
Blaydes, 29, has won three straight fights after getting stopped by heavyweight monster Francis Ngannou for the second time in his career in November 2018.
Blaydes is 8-2 in UFC fights with his only two losses coming to Ngannou via knockout. The American is ranked the No. 3 contender to Stipe Miocic’s heavyweight crown, and is among the best heavyweights in the world.
Meanwhile, Volkov enters the contest ranked No. 7 in the division. He was handily beating Derrick Lewis at UFC 229 before being knocked out with just seconds left on the clock but rebounded by winning a decision against raw powerhouse Greg Hardy in November 2019.
While neither Blaydes nor Volkov is ready to vault into a position to fight for the title next, a win by either in this fight puts the victor in position to do that in the near future.
The most important fight in heavyweight division right now is the upcoming third fight between Miocic and Daniel Cormier.
After that, Ngannou should get the nod for next crack at the champ.
But Blaydes or Volkov should figure into things down the line.
UFC Fight Night: Poirer-Hooker on June 27
Poirer and Hooker should produce a fun-filled action fight.
Both lightweights are aggressive and talented fighters hoping to make a big statement in the talent-laden 155-pound division currently ruled by Khabib Nurmagomedov.
Poirer, 31, hasn’t fought since being submitted in the third round by Nurmagomedov at UFC 242 in September 2019. The American is currently ranked the No. 3 contender behind top-rated challenger and interim champ Justin Gaethje and Tony Ferguson.
Hooker is ranked No. 5 and probably hopes that beating Poirer would put him in position to challenge for a world title soon. The 30-year-old from New Zealand has won three straight contests and is among the most popular fighters in the sport.
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