Darren Till is set to make the walk to the Octagon for the second time as a middleweight on March 7 in Las Vegas.
Till was rumored to be fighting Jack Hermansson at UFC London. But, UFC president recently revealed that would not be the case and he would be fighting at top-tier middleweight.
“We’ve been talking to [Till] and bouncing around with different opponents and yeah, we’ll have something for him very soon,” White said to TheMacLife. “It’ll either be London or Vegas.”
“Probably not [against Hermansson]. We’ll see how this plays out,” he added. “[It will be against] one of the top guys.”
Now, we know who that opponent will be as Darren Till will replace Robert Whittaker, who pulled out of the fight, and take on Jared Cannonier at UFC 248. This according to Amy Kaplan of FanSided.
Till is coming off of a split-decision win over Kelvin Gastelum at UFC 244 to return to the win column. It also served as his 185-pound debut. Before that, he suffered the back-to-back losses to Jorge Masvidal by knockout and a submission loss to Tyron Woodley for the title. The Englishman is 18-2-1 and is 6-2-1 inside the Octagon with notable wins over Donald Cerrone and Stephen Thompson.
Jared Cannonier, meanwhile, has had a career renaissance since dropping down to middleweight as he is 3-0. He first TKO’s David Branch and then TKO’d Anderson Silva. That earned him a main event scrap against Jack Hermansson, where he earned another TKO win. The American is currently ranked fourth at middleweight.
With Israel Adesanya and Yoel Romero set to be on the card as well, the timing lines up for the winner of this to earn a title shot unless Paulo Costa is healthy enough to get the next crack. Cannonier should also be the backup fighter as Romero has missed weight twice in title fights.