Brian Kelleher will remain on Saturday’s UFC Vegas 9 card.
Originally, Kelleher was supposed to fight Ricky Simon in what was a really intriguing matchup. Yet, on Saturday, Simon announced he was pulled from the fight due to one of his cornerman testing positive for COVID-19. When the news dropped, it was uncertain if the UFC would like to rebook the fight or if they would search for a replacement opponent.
Well, it turns out to be the latter as according to MMAJunkie, Kevin Natividad will make his UFC debut against Kelleher. The fight will take place at featherweight. Since the COVID-19 pandemic, Kelleher has been fighting at 145-pounds as he didn’t want to have to cut weight and it will remain like that on Saturday.
Brian Kelleher had his two-fight winning streak snapped last time out as he lost a decision to Cody Stamann at UFC 250. Before that, he pulled off back-to-back upset wins with a knockout over Hunter Azure and a submission over Ode Osbourne.
Kevin Natividad, meanwhile, is on a five-fight winning streak and has been fighting in LFA. The 27-year-old is a natural bantamweight and is 9-1 as a pro.
Last time out, Natividad scored a second-round knockout over Kyle Estrada in July. Out of his nine career wins, six have come by stoppage with five being by knockout. He does have a notable win over current UFC fighter, Irwin Rivera, as he beat him by majority decision.
UFC Vegas 9 is now as follows:
- Alistair Overeem vs. Augusto Sakai
- Michel Pereira vs. Zelim Imadaev
- Ovince Saint Preux vs. Alonzo Menifield
- Nicco Montano vs. Julia Avila
- Bartosz Fabinski vs. Andre Muniz
- Thiago Moises vs. Jalin Turner
- Hunter Azure vs. Cole Smith
- Viviane Araujo vs. Montana De La Rosa
- Marcos Rogerio de Lima vs. Alexander Romanov
- Sijara Eubanks vs. Karol Rosa
- Brian Kelleher vs. Kevin Natividad