The UFC 223 battle card has been a moving target, to put it nicely.
What was once a highly expected card comprising Khabib Nurmagomedov and Tony Ferguson fighting for its lightweight title has been dismantled by accidents, bad weight cuts and an inexplicable attack from Conor McGregor, who’ll eliminate a title on the card before stepping into the Octagon.
Shaheen Al-Shatti of MMA Fighting recapped all the volatility surrounding fight week:
So Tony-Khabib, but Tony’s hurt so Khabib-Max, but Max can’t cut some more weight so Khabib-Pettis, but nah so Khabib-Felder, but Felder ai not rated and seemingly that things, therefore Khabib-Iaquinta, but Iaquinta can’t win the belt since he wore shorts to weigh-ins.
11:08 PM – Apr 6, 2018
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These were just the adjustments to the major event. McGregor’s antics cost the card three fights, as Artem Lobov-Alex Caceres, Michael Chiesa-Anthony Pettis and Ray Borg-Brandon Moreno were all scratched as a result.
What’s left is an interesting card with just nine conflicts, but it is still worth checking out.
If anything, the co-main occasion between Joanna Jedrzejczyk and Rose Namajunas for the women’s strawweight name is the highlight. The rematch is a strong contender for Fight of the Night.
Here’s a look at the whole card:
Main Card (Pay-per-view at 10 p.m. ET)
Khabib Nurmagomedov (-500) vs. Al Iaquinta (+350)
Rose Namajunas (-110) vs. Joanna Jedrzejczyk (-120)
Renato Moicano (-105) vs. Calvin Kattar (-125)
Zabit Magomedsharipov (-700) vs. Kyle Bochniak (+450)
Joe Lauzon (-175) vs. Chris Gruetzemacher (+145)
Preliminary Card (FOX Sports 1 at 8 p.m. ET)
Karolina Kowalkiewicz (-210) vs. Felice Herrig (+170)
Bec Rawlings (+160) vs. Ashlee Evans-Smith (-200)
Olivier Aubin-Mercier (-110) vs. Evan Dunham (-120)
Devin Clark (-115) vs. Mike Rodriguez (-115)
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