Fights on Tap is a weekly roundup of all the fights booked in the UFC, Bellator and other promotions.
I have a question for you, folks. What grade would you give the final UFC pay-per-view of 2022? All things considered, I would give UFC 282 a B-! We got off to a solid start, with ten straight fights ending in a finish. And then the co-headliner and headliner were controversial, so the night ended on a low note. With that event now over, we can look at what we have ahead of us on the upcoming schedule.
The UFC either announced or finalized fights eight this week, and a new light heavyweight champion should be crowned next month.
UFC president Dana White was so miffed at the result of Jan Blachowicz vs. Magomed Ankalaev that he did the one thing he never does: immediate post-fight matchmaking. In front of reporters following UFC 282 on Saturday, White revealed he spoke with the matchmakers and decided to book Glover Teixeira vs. Jamahal Hill for the still vacant UFC light heavyweight championship for UFC 283 in January.
Teixeira was expected to share the Octagon with Jiří Procházka, the now ex-champion who he was dethroned by. But the Brazilian went without his championship opportunity when an injury knocked ‘Denisa’ out of the much-anticipated rematch. He has another one, though, and it will be against Hill. ’Sweet Dreams’ has finished his past three opponents by (T)KO. After his ‘Fight of the Night’ awarded performance against Thiago Santos, Hill called for a title shot. Instead, he was booked against another one-time title challenger in Anthony Smith for an upcoming UFC Fight Night in March. However, in light of recent events, the fast-rising contender is getting what he initially asked for.
UFC 285 — March 4
Farid Basharat vs. Da’mon Blackshear — bantamweight
First rep. by Nolan King and Farah Hannoun of MMA Junkie
Viviane Araújo vs. Amanda Ribas — women’s flyweight
First rep. by Dama de Ferro MMA
Announced Bellator fights:
Bellator 290 — February 4
Sabah Homasi vs. Brennan Ward — welterweight
Grant Neal vs. Karl Albrektsson — light heavyweight
Ethan Hughes vs. Yusuf Karakaya — welterweight
Announced Cage Warriors fights:
Cage Warriors 148 — December 31
Christian Leroy Duncan vs. Jesse Taylor — middleweight
Darren Stewart vs. Guilherme Cadena — catchweight (195 lbs.)