It’s not exactly a fight for the ages, but the story of Dean Barry vs. Mike Jackson has been an interesting one to say the least.
That story continued on Sunday, with news breaking that a fight between the pair was back on. The welterweight duo will face off at a UFC Fight Night event on April 23, 2022.
Back in 2020, a then 3-1 Barry was announced as having signed with the UFC. Reports of a fight with Jackson, best known as CM Punk’s second opponent in the promotion, then circulated, and were confirmed by both camps.
Then, just as 2021 was kicking off, Barry announced that the fight, scheduled for that January, had been postponed. An April date followed, which Barry himself withdrew from, and eventually, he wound up back on the regional circuit, picking up a win under the Titan FC banner last month.
The only other news in any way related to either party to hit the MMA world in 2021 was that Jackson’s lone win, at UFC 225 against former WWE star Punk (now back in the pro wrestling world with AEW), had been overturned. Jackson, a part-time fighter who has also worked as a photographer in MMA, had tested positive for marijuana.
A since-deleted Instagram account attributed to Jackson did not react positively to the news. “It’s funny how you losers think your opinion matters,” a comment on the initial story regarding the drug test failure read.
Now, over a year after the pairing was first mulled, it appears to be back on. Barry just recently announced he had signed a deal with the UFC, and had additionally agreed to a bout. MMA Island was first to report news of the pairing, which Cageside Press confirmed Sunday.
Bout agreement signed 📄🖋
Time for the Irish invasion 🇮🇪 #UFCDEBUT
— Dean Barry (@deanbarry92) January 16, 2022
For Jackson (0-1, 1NC), it will be his first fight in MMA in four years. Aside from the 2018 bout with Punk, which was originally a unanimous decision win for Jackson, he lost his promotional debut against Mickey Gall in 2016.
Prior to that fight, which was essentially a setup fight for Gall, the only other bout on Jackson’s record was a 2012 amateur contest, which he won via split decision.
Ireland’s Barry (4-1) debuted as a pro in 2017, going 1-1 through his first two bouts before embarking on a three-fight winning streak. All of Barry’s win have come via stoppage, with the only blemish besides his lone loss being the questionable record of his most recent opponent — which sat at 6-30 prior to their contest.
The UFC’s April 23, 2022 Fight Night show does not have a venue, location, or broadcast plan officially announced. The event currently consists of the following bouts:
Qileng Aori vs. Cameron Else
Louis Cosce vs. Preston Parsons
Clay Guida vs. Claudio Puelles
Mike Jackson vs. Dean Barry