As Kelvin Gastelum put it, it’s “once more unto the breach” at UFC 273.
Gastelum (16-8, 1NC) has been booked opposite Nassourdine Imavov (11-3) at the April Pay-Per-View event. The Ultimate Fighter 17 winner confirmed news of the bout on social media Thursday, following an initial report from ESPN.
Once more unto the breach dear friends, once more. https://t.co/uDViJTnSOw
— #OnAmission4Gold (@KelvinGastelum) January 13, 2022
The middleweight match-up features two fighters on very different trajectories of late.
For Gastelum, the fight marks an opportunity to pull out of a two-fight skid. In his past two trips to the octagon, the 30-year old has dropped decisions to Jared Cannonier and Robert Whittaker. Overall, Gastelum is 1-5 in his past six fights. All five losses have come via decision. His lone win came against Ian Heinisch at UFC 258 last year, also by decision.
Gastelum would be well served to avoid the scorecards in this one.
Imavov, for his part, has won two straight. 3-1 in the UFC to date, he’s scored TKO wins over Heinisch and Edmen Shahbazyan in his last two fights. The Dagestani fighter joined the UFC in 2020, and like Gastelum, has previously competed as a welterweight.
UFC 273 is expected to take place on April 9, 2022, and was initially linked to the Barclays Center in Brooklyn NY — though that location may very well change. Thus far, the following bouts have been reported for the card:
Alexander Volkanovski (c) vs. Chan Sung Jung – for the UFC featherweight championship
Aljamain Sterling (c) vs. Petr Yan (ic) – for the UFC bantamweight championship / title unification bout
Aspen Ladd vs. Irene Aldana
Mickey Gall vs. Mike Malott
Mackenzie Dern vs. Tecia Torres
Kelvin Gastelum vs. Nassourdine Imavov