Merab Dvalishvili vs. Petr Yan in the works as UFC Fight Night 221 headliner

A major bantamweight bout is targeted to serve as an upcoming main event.

Pending bout finalization, surging Georgian fighter Merab Dvalishvili will take on former UFC bantamweight champion Petr Yan in a five-round bout atop the UFC Fight Night 221 billing. The event takes place March 11 at The Theater at Virgin Hotels in Las Vegas.

Two people with knowledge of the targeted booking including Dvalishvili’s manager Oren Hodak recently confirmed the matchup to MMA Junkie. Las Vegas Review Journal first reported the bout Tuesday. Verbal agreements are in place, though bout contracts have not yet been signed.

Dvalishvili (15-4 MMA, 8-2 UFC) rides an eight-fight winning streak into the bout. He most recently competed in August when he defeated Jose Aldo by unanimous decision at UFC 278. A surging contender in the upper echelon of the UFC rankings, Dvalishvili has publicly stated he will not fight teammate and champion Aljamain Sterling.

Yan (16-4 MMA, 8-3 UFC) will look to get back on track after a two-fight skid with close decision losses to Sterling and, more recently, Sean O’Malley. Yan holds career wins over Aldo, Cory Sandhagen, Urijah Faber, and Magomed Magomedov, among others.

With the addition, the UFC Fight Night 221 lineup includes:

  • Merab Dvalishivli vs. Petr Yan
  • Abu Azaitar vs. Sedriques Dumas
  • Lukasz Brzeski vs. Karl Williams
  • JJ Aldrich vs. Ariane Lipski
  • Raphael Assuncao vs. Kyler Phillips

For more on the card, visit MMA Junkie’s event hub for UFC Fight Night 221.

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