The long-awaited return of Tatiana Suarez is finally upon us.
Ariel Helwani first reported the news that Suarez will return to the octagon against MMA women’s pioneer and former title challenger Roxanne Modafferi. The pairing is targeted for September’s UFC 266.
Suarez (8-0) has not been in action since her unanimous decision over Nina Nunes in June 2019. Suarez has been dealing with a serious neck injury that she sustained from years of wrestling, which along with a cancer diagnosis eventually lead her missing the Olympics. In a recent interview, she told ESPN’s Helwani that she plans on going up to flyweight to test it out. The Ultimate Fighter season 23 winner holds wins over Carla Esparza and Alexa Grasso at strawweight.
Modafferi (25-18) was scheduled to fight Talia Santos on May 8 but withdrew from the fight with a meniscus tear. “The Happy Warrior” has alternated wins and losses throughout her second UFC run, most recently suffering a loss against Viviane Araujo on ‘Fight Island’ in January. Modafferi will be defending her No. 9 ranking in the flyweight division.
UFC 266 does not yet have a venue or location officially announced. The Pay-per-View event is expected to take place on September 4, 2021. The card as reported to date includes the following bouts:
- Alexander Volkanovski Brian Ortega – for the UFC featherweight title
- Manon Fiorot vs. Mayra Bueno Silva
- Uros Medic vs. Jalin Turner
- Jessica Andrade vs. Cynthia Calvillo
- Merab Dvalishvili vs. Marlon Moraes
- Curtis Blaydes vs. Jairzinho Rozenstruik
- Sarah Alpar vs. Erin Blanchfield
- Tatiana Suarez vs. Roxanne Modafferi