Grant Dawson will compete at UFC Norfolk after all.
Sources confirm to MyMMANews.com that Darrick Minner will step in on a little over a week’s notice to face Dawson at UFC on ESPN+ 27 after Chas Skelly was forced out of the rescheduled bout with an injury. The event takes place Feb. 29 at the Chartway Arena in Norfolk, Va. and will be headlined by a vacant flyweight title fight between Joseph Benavidez and Deiveson Figureiredo.
Minner appeared on Dana White’s Contender Series in August and took on Herbert Burns at the UFC Apex in Las Vegas. Burns picked up a first round submission win, and a UFC contract to boot, while Minner went back to the drawing board. The Nebraska native has since picked up back-to-back opening round submission wins of his own over Terrance McKinney and 28-fight veteran Charlie DuBray to set him up with a golden opportunity to compete in the Octagon.
Dawson was scheduled to face Skelly at UFC 246 last month before being forced to withdraw from the bout due to the results of an out-of-competition USADA test. Earlier this week, the Nevada State Athletic Commission stated that Dawson must undergo six months of drug testing before being granted a temporary license to compete in the state on July 1. In addition, Dawson was given the green light to compete on the leap year day card as long as the Virginia State Athletic Commission approved it.
“The Prophet” is on an impressive five-fight winning streak, including a second-round submission win over Mike Trizano in his most recent bout at May’s UFC on ESPN+ 10 event. The 26-year-old Dawson defeated Julian Erosa via unanimous decision in his Octagon debut after earning a contract during the 2017 season of the Contender Series.
In the UFC Norfolk co-main event, Felicia Spencer will face Zarah Fairn in a women’s featherweight bout, while Megan Anderson will also compete on the main card as she takes on the unbeaten and debuting Norma Dumont.