There will be swanging, banging, and a featherweight title fight coming to Las Vegas this July with the additions of Derrick Lewis vs. Francis Ngannou and Max Holloway vs. Brian Ortega to UFC 226.
A matchup between Derrick Lewis and Francis Ngannou has been brewing for quite some time, with Lewis taking periodic shots at him on social media, and Ngannou offering some responses in interviews. The hard-hitting heavyweights both have their fair share of cardio issues, but can knock out anybody with a single punch.
Derrick Lewis is coming off a hard-fought victory over Marcin Tybura, in which Tybura was winning the bout with his wrestling, but Lewis exploded for a fourth-round TKO stoppage. The much-needed victory followed a tough loss to Mark Hunt, and a fight night injury that pulled him from a bout with Fabricio Werdum.
Francis Ngannou skyrocketed to the top of the heavyweight division, finishing all-comers in his first six appearances, including striking legend Alistair Overeem. The Cameroonian earned a title shot with his run and took on the great Stipe Miocic. Miocic ate what Ngannou had to offer, and grinded out five rounds that drained everything from the massive Ngannou, and he has not fought since.
It took some sorting out in the featherweight division, and an injury to Holloway, but Brian Ortega has earned his shot at the belt. Max Holloway was supposed to headline UFC 222 against Frankie Edgar but pulled out with an injury, and Ortega stepped in and took full advantage by knocking out Edgar in the very first round. Since then, Holloway was briefly scheduled for a bout with Khabib Nurmagomedov at UFC 223 but was unable to make weight.
UFC 226 is headlined by a superfight between champions Stipe Miocic and Daniel Cormier, and takes place July 7 from the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas.