Merab Dvalishvili gets new opponent
Merab “the Machine” Dvalishvili (12-4) was originally scheduled to take on Cody Stamann on December 5th at UFC Vegas 16 until Stamann pulled out of the fight due to a positive Covid-19 test. Dvalishvili remained optimistic that the UFC would find another opponent and it looks like his wish is being granted as Raoni Barcelos (16-1) has agreed to the fight according to an initial report on the “Anik and Florian” podcast.. Both fighters have been very successful recently as they each have gone 5-0 in their last 5. The Machine is currently ranked 13th in the bantamweight division and Barcelos 21st.
Dvalishvili has tremendous cardio and already holds the record for take-downs in his weight division as he has consistently dominated in that area. His stand-up game also has grown in leaps as he works relentlessly with his coaches at Serra-Longo and trains with a multitude of elite fighters including teammate Aljamain Sterling, who is scheduled to fight for the UFC Bantamweight Championship vs Peter Yan.
Barcelos, the Brazilian, has 8 victories via TKO and 2 submissions among his 16 wins. He has fought some very stiff competition already as his last five opponents have a combined record of 77-16-2. This should be a tremendous match-up.
The December 5 UFC Fight Night show will be headlined by middleweights Jack Hermansson and Kevin Holland, who stepped in as a replacement for Darren Till.
Updated fight card:
Jack Hermansson vs. Kevin Holland -185 lbs
Merab Dvalishvili vs. Raoni Barcelos – 135 lbs
Bethe Correia vs. Yanan Wu – 135 lbs
Gian Villante vs. Jake Collier – 265 lbs
Taila Santos vs. Maryna Moroz – 125 lbs
Jimmy Flick vs. Cody Durden – 125 lbs
Roman Dolidze vs. John Allan – 205 lbs
Ovince St. Preux vs. Jamahal Hill – 205 lbs
Damon Jackson vs. Ilia Topuria – 145 lbs
Movsar Evloev vs. Nate Landwehr – 145 lbs
Commentator for Art of War Cagefighting. More than 10 years experience in the PA/NJ regional MMA circuit. Commentator/post fight interviews. Television/media/event production.
The story of the fighter is what Bob loves about the sport. From the lowest level, to the highest, he only cares about the two warriors who do battle once the cage doors close. Everything else is secondary. Without their blood, sweat, and tears, he would not be here enjoying every minute.