A potential high-stakes, fan-pleasing middleweight matchup has reportedly been added to the UFC’s first pay-per-view event of March in 2023. Brett Okamoto of ESPN was first to report that a fight between fifth-ranked Derek Brunson and Dricus Du Plessis has been added to UFC 285, one of two pay-per-view events the promotion will hold in the month of March.
Although having previously mentioned retirement, it’s clear that Derek Brunson wants to stay active, and even went as far as to say he’d like four fights in the upcoming 2023 years, and he will get his first big test in the first quarter of the calendar year. It will have been a year since Brunson stepped inside the Octagon, with his last fight coming in a loss to Jared Cannonier at UFC 271 in February.
Before the loss to Cannonier, Derek Brunson was on a five-fight winning streak, with notable wins over Darren Till, Kevin Holland, and Edmen Shahbazyan to name a few, picking up two finishes during his run. One of the most consistent and successful veterans in the middleweight division, wanting to stay active and face rising competition, Brunson will not only be looking to get back to his winning ways, but keep his place as a Top-5 ranked middleweight in the division.
One of the fastest rising talents in the division, Dricus Du Plessis is undefeated in four fights with the UFC promotion and with his win over Darren Till at UFC 282, finds himself ranked tenth in a very deep and competitive division. With a win, it would be a major statement not only to the division, but to his place in the rankings, which arguably would be Top-5 if victorious.
UFC 285 takes place in Las Vegas, Nevada on March 4, and below are the fights that have been announced for the event.
- Viviane Araujo vs Amanda Ribas
- Jamie Pickett vs Bo Nickal
- Jessica Penne vs Tabatha Ricci
- Farid Basharat vs Da’Mon Blackshear
- Cody Garbrandt vs Julio Arce
- Mario Bautista vs Guido Cannetti
- Julian Marquez vs Marc-Andre Barriault
- Derek Brunson vs Dricus Du Plessis
Mike Pendleton is a current contributor to MyMMANews while also hosting his “On The Mic” podcast and is a former Associate Producer at Sirius XM’s Fight Nation.
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