The UFC has started booking fights into 2023 and they have its first headliner of the year.
According to French outlet LaSueur, Kelvin Gastelum will face Nassourdine Imavov in the main event of a Fight Night card on January 14. The event will likely take place at the UFC Apex in Las Vegas, Nevada, it also serves as a re-booking after the two were supposed to fight earlier this year at UFC 273 but VISA issues forced Imavov to pull out of the fight.
Kelvin Gastelum (16-8 and one No Contest) has struggled as of late as the TUF winner is just 1-5 in his last six and on a two-fight losing skid. Last time out, he suffered a decision loss to Jared Cannonier and prior to that, dropped a decision to Robert Whittaker, with both fights serving as main events.
Gastelum’s last win came back at UFC 258 in February of 2021 as he beat Ian Heinisch by decision which snapped a three-fight losing skid that saw him be submitted by Jack Hermansson in 78-seconds, dropped a split decision to Darren Till, and suffered a decision loss to Israel Adesanya for the interim middleweight title. He’s currently ranked 11th at middleweight and also holds notable wins over Michael Bisping, Jacare Souza, Johny Hendricks, and Nate Marquardt among others.
Nassourdine Imavov (12-3) is riding a three-fight winning streak and coming off a decision win over Joaquin Buckley at UFC Paris in September. During his win streak, the Frenchman scored a TKO win over Edmen Shabazyan and Ian Heinisch. The 12th-ranked middleweight is 4-1 in the UFC as he won his debut by beating Jordan Williams by decision while he lost a majority decision to Phil Hawes.
With Gastelum vs. Imavov set to headline the Jan. 14 Fight Night card, the event is as follows:
- Kelvin Gastelum vs. Nassourdine Imavov
- Jeff Molina vs. Jimmy Flick
Cole Shelton covers MMA for BJPenn.com, MMANews, and MyMMANews.com while also being the lead MMA odds writer for Sports Betting Dime