Phil Hawes vs. Nassourdine Imavov Joins UFC’s Jan. 16 Fight Island Card

UFC 254 Jacob Malkoun Phil Hawes
ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES - OCTOBER 24: Phillip Hawes celebrates his KO victory over Jacob Malkoun of Australia in their middleweight bout during the UFC 254 event on October 24, 2020 on UFC Fight Island, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. (Photo by Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)

The UFC’s growing January 16 card, which may or may not air on broadcast TV care of ABC, continues to grow. The latest addition came Christmas Day, with middleweights Phil Hawes and Nassourdine Imavov joining the event.

MMA DNA was first to report the match-up.

Hawes (9-2) is a Contender Series winner and Bellator vet who finally made it to the octagon in 2020. A cast member of The Ultimate Fighter 23 in 2016, things did not go Hawes’ way on the show, as he wound up losing to eventual victor Andrew Sanchez. After a brief stint in the World Series of Fighting, Hawes appeared on Dana White’s Contender Series in 2017, only to be finished with a head kick by Julian Marquez.

If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again. Hawes bounced back with wins in Bellator and Brave CF to appear on the Contender Series for a second time in September. There, he picked up a finish against Khadzhimurat Bestaev to punch his ticket to the UFC. He then won his promotional debut against Jacob Malkoun at UFC 254.

Nassourdine Imavov (9-2) boasts an identical record to Hawes. The “Russian Sniper” has won six straight, including his own UFC debut earlier this year.

The UFC’s January 16 event is headlined by featherweights Max Holloway and Calvin Katter. The following bouts have been reported for the event thus far:

Max Holloway vs. Calvin Kattar
Omari Akhmedov vs. Tom Breese
David Zawada vs. Ramazan Emeev
Ricky Simon vs. Brian Kelleher
Justin Tafa vs. Carlos Felipe
Austin Lingo vs. Jacob Kilburn
Punahele Soriano vs. Duško Todorovic
Julianna Pena vs. Sara McMann
Bethe Correia vs. Wu Yanan
Rodolfo Vieira vs. Anthony Hernandez
Nik Lentz vs. Mike Grundy
Warlley Alves vs. Christian Aguilera
Santiago Ponzinibbio vs. Li Jingliang
Nassourdine Imavov vs. Phil Hawes
Alessio Di Chirico vs. Joaquin Buckley