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Report: Curtis Blaydes vs. Shamil Abdurakhimov in the works for UFC 242

A heavyweight fight between Curtis Blaydes and Shamil Abdurakhimov is expected to take place at UFC 242.

MMA: UFC 217-Blaydes vs Oleinik Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports

A heavyweight fight between top contender Curtis Blaydes and Shamil Abdurakhimov is being targeted for UFC 242 in September.

Farah Hannoun first reported the news on Tuesday, though the UFC is yet to confirm the matchup. Blaydes is currently ranked at number four in the heavyweight division, whilst Abdurakhimov sits at the number ten slot.

Blaydes (11-2, 1NC) last fought in March at UFC Nashville when he defeated Justin Willis by a one-sided unanimous decision. “Razor” went on an impressive four-fight win streak, including stoppage wins over Alistair Overeem and Aleksei Oleinik. However, his streak was ended by Francis Ngannou when Blaydes was knocked out in just 45-seconds last November.

Abdurakhimov (20-4) is currently on the best winning streak of his UFC career, winning his last three fights. The 37-year-old finished Marcin Tybura by second-round TKO last month at UFC St. Petersburg, and he won a decision against Andrei Arlovski before that.

UFC 242 marks the promotion’s first return to Abu Dhabi in five years, with a Fight Night card last taking place in the country in 2014. UFC lightweight champion Khabib Nurmagomedov is expected to headline the card against Dustin Poirier.