COMPELLING WELTERWEIGHT MATCHUP BETWEEN
(#3) LEON EDWARDS AND (#13) BELAL MUHAMMAD
HEADLINES AT UFC® APEX IN LAS VEGAS
(#10) MISHA CIRKUNOV vs. (#13) RYAN SPANN
BEN ROTHWELL vs. PHILIPE LINS
Las Vegas – UFC® continues its run of events at UFC APEX with a compelling welterweight matchup as No. 3 ranked Leon Edwards and No. 13 Belal Muhammad collide in the main event. In the co-main event, ranked light heavyweights aim to steal the show as No. 10 Misha Cirkunov takes on No. 13 Ryan Spann.
UFC FIGHT NIGHT®: EDWARDS vs. MUHAMMAD will take place Saturday, March 13 from UFC APEX in Las Vegas. The entire card will be available on ESPN+ in English and Spanish, with the main card starting at 8 p.m. ET / 5 p.m. PT and the prelims at 5 p.m. ET / 2 p.m. PT.
Perennial top contender Edwards (18-3, fighting out of Birmingham, England) makes his long awaited return to the Octagon almost two years since his last bout. The owner of the second-longest active win streak in the stacked welterweight division, Edwards secured his spot in the top five with victories over Albert Tumenov, Vicente Luque, Gunnar Nelson, and most recently, former champion Rafael Dos Anjos. He now intends to deliver his most impressive performance yet and declare himself as the next contender for the belt.
Muhammad (18-3, fighting out of Chicago, Ill.) steps up on short notice following a dominant victory over Dhiego Lima on February 13 to compete in the biggest fight of his career. The winner of eight of his last nine bouts, Muhammad established himself as one of the best in the world with wins over Lyman Good, Takashi Sato and Curtis Millender. He now plans to shock the world in his first UFC main event by taking out Edwards.
Grappling specialist Cirkunov (15-5, fighting out of Toronto, Ontario, Canada) looks to build another impressive win streak and continue his climb up the light heavyweight ladder. A Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu black belt, he has finished all six of his UFC wins by stoppage, including five submissions over the likes of Ion Cutelaba, Nikita Krylov, and highly touted prospect Jimmy Crute. Cirkunov now aims to defend his spot in the rankings by becoming the first person to submit Spann in the UFC.
Spann (20-6, fighting out of Beaumont, Texas) has his sights set on beginning his 2021 campaign with a marquee victory. A veteran of Dana White’s Contender Series, Spann wowed fans by submitting Emiliano Sordi in just 26 seconds to earn his contract. Since joining the UFC, he has secured wins over Devin Clark, Sam Alvey and Antonio Rogerio Nogueira. Spann now seeks to break into the top 10 of the division by beating Cirkunov at his own game.
Additional bouts on the card include:
- Heavyweight action sees Ben Rothwell (38-18, fighting out of Kenosha, Wisc.) battle Philipe Lins (14-5, fighting out of Coconut Creek, Fla. by way of Rio Grande do Norte, Brazil)
- No. 12 ranked women’s strawweight Angela Hill (12-9, fighting out of San Diego, Calif.) intends to defend her spot in the rankings against submission specialist Ashley Yoder (8-6, fighting out of Temecula, Calif.)
- Manel Kape (15-5, fighting out of Phuket, Thailand by way of Porto, Portugal) steps in for the injured Tagir Ulanbekov looking to secure his first UFC win against Matheus Nicolau (13-3-1, fighting out of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil) at flyweight
- An exciting featherweight bout sees No. 9 ranked Dan Ige (14-3, fighting out of Haleiwa, Hawaii) take on Gavin Tucker (13-1, fighting out of Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada)
- Eryk Anders (13-5, fighting out of Birmingham, Ala.) looks to bounce back into the winners column against Darren Stewart (12-6, 1 NC, fighting out of London, England) at middleweight
- Cortney Casey (9-8, fighting out of Glendale, Ariz.) and JJ Aldrich (8-4, fighting out of Westminster, Colo.) intend to put on a show in the women’s flyweight division
- Nasrat Haqparast (12-3, fighting out of Hamburg, Germany) locks horns with Don Madge (9-3-1, fighting out of Midrand, Guateng, South Africa) in a lightweight bout guaranteed to deliver action
- Submission expert Rani Yahya (26-10-1, 1 NC, fighting out of Brasilia, Brazil) returns against Dana White’s Contender Series veteran Ray Rodriguez (16-6, fighting out of San Antonio, Texas)
- Featherweight Canadian standout Charles Jourdain (10-3-1, fighting out of Beloeil, Quebec, Canada) aims to spoil the debut of Marcelo Rojo (16-7, fighting out of Tijuana, Baja California, Mexico)
- A bantamweight bout sees Jonathan Martinez (13-3, fighting out of Plainview, Texas) matchup with Davey Grant (12-4, fighting out of Bishop Auckland, County Durham, England)
- Dana White’s Contender Series signee Gloria de Paula (5-2, fighting out of Sao Paulo, Brazil) makes her UFC debut against Jinh Yu Frey (9-6, fighting out of Arlington, Texas) at strawweight
- Welterweight hopefuls collide as Matthew Semelsberger (7-2, fighting out of Ijamsville, Md.) takes on Jason Witt (18-6, fighting out of Overland Park, Kan.)
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