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Michael Chiesa vs. Anthony Pettis verbally agreed for UFC 223

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A lightweight fight between Michael Chiesa and Anthony Pettis is nearly set for UFC 223.

MMA: UFC Fight Night-Chiesa vs Lee Sean Pokorny-USA TODAY Sports

Days after lightweight contender Michael Chiesa announced that he was going to fight at UFC 223, it looks as if we now know which opponent he’ll be facing.

ESPN’s Brett Okamoto reported on Tuesday that Chiesa is slated to fight former WEC and UFC champion Anthony Pettis on the April 7th pay-per-view in Brooklyn, New York. The UFC has yet to announce the fight themselves.

Chiesa (14-3) last competed in June 2016, losing by rear-naked choke to Kevin Lee. He would later appeal the result, saying that he was never unconscious and that referee Mario Yamasaki had erred, but the appeal was denied by the Oklahoma State Athletic Commission. That defeat snapped his three-fight winning streak, which included impressive stoppages of Beneil Dariush and Jim Miller, as well as a unanimous decision nod vs. Mitch Clarke.

Pettis (20-7) is coming off a thrilling fight with Dustin Poirier at UFC Norfolk last November, but he suffered a rib injury and was stopped in round 3. “Showtime” is realistically fighting to stay relevant as a contender, having won just two of his last seven fights, including a failed attempt to win the interim featherweight title vs. Max Holloway, a fight in which he missed weight. Pettis did notch a win in 2017, beating Jim Miller by unanimous decision at UFC 213.

UFC 223 features a lightweight championship main event between Tony Ferguson and Khabib Nurmagomedov, as well as a strawweight championship rematch between titleholder Rose Namajunas and Joanna Jedrzejczyk.