Former UFC interim lightweight champion Tony Ferguson will be moving to welterweight to compete on September’s UFC 279 card.
Earlier in the day on Saturday, Ferguson (25-7) in true “El Cucuy” fashion had hinted that something was in the works for him. During the UFC 278 post-fight press conference, with media outlets including Cageside Press in attendance, UFC President Dana White confirmed that Ferguson would face “The Leech,” a.k.a. Li Jingliang (19-7).
Ferguson, who started his career at 170lbs and won The Ultimate Fighter 13 tournament at welterweight, will be returning to the weight class for the first time in over a decade in the fight. He’ll also be looking to snap a four-fight losing streak, which has seen him drop fights to Justin Gaethje, Charles Oliveira, Beneil Dariush, and Michael Chandler.
Jingliang will enter what is unquestionably the biggest fight of his career off a win over Muslim Salikhov. The Chinese welterweight joined the UFC in 2014, and holds seven post-fight bonuses.
UFC 279 is set to be headlined by a welterweight showdown between Khamzat Chimaev and Nate Diaz, in a five-round non-title affair. The addition of Ferguson should certainly boost the event’s star power.
Currently, the following bouts have been reported for the PPV card, which takes place September 10, 2022 at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada.
- Khamzat Chimaev vs. Nate Diaz
- Johnny Walker vs. Ion Cuțelaba
- Shamil Abdurakhimov vs. Jailton Almeida
- Hakeem Dawodu vs. Julian Erosa
- Irene Aldana vs. Macy Chiasson
- Jamie Pickett vs. Denis Tiuliulin
- Jake Collier vs. Chris Barnett
- Norma Dumont vs. Danyelle Wolf
- Alateng Heili vs. Chad Anheliger
- Elise Reed vs. Melissa Martinez
- Darian Weeks vs. Yohan Lainesse
- Trey Ogden vs. Daniel Zellhuber
- Nikolas Motta vs. Cameron VanCamp
- Louis Cosce vs. Trevin Giles
- Tony Ferguson vs. Li Jingliang