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