UFC 272 will feature a stacked card after two major title fights became official for the March 5th event in Las Vegas with featherweight champion Alexander Volkanovski signed up to fight Max Holloway for a third time, while bantamweight titleholder Aljamain Sterling locks horns with Petr Yan in their long-awaited rematch.
Volkanovski and Holloway had previously squared up in back-to-back fights in late 2019 and the summer of 2020, with the Australian stunning ‘Blessed’ by ending his 14-fight unbeaten reign at 145lbs by way of unanimous decision in their first encounter.
it was a competitive fight though and the rematch was even more-so, with numerous media sites actually believing that he’d done enough, but the judges saw it differently and Volkanovski again emerged with his hand-raised, albeit this time by split decision.
Since then Volkanovski has racked up another successful title defense with a convincing decision win over Brian Ortega, taking his own unbeaten record in the UFC to ten fights, while Holloway has secured decision wins over Calvin Kattar and Yair Rodriguez in two of the best battles of 2021.
So that trilogy encounter is worth the price of admission on it’s own, but fans will also be treated to a run-back of last year’s controversial title fight between Sterling and Yan.
Yan had gone into the fight as champion, having won seven fights in a row prior to that, and he appeared to be gaining an increasingly firm grip on the bout by the fourth round, only to then land an illegal knee as he looked to finish his foe in the fourth round, which resulted in Sterling claiming that he couldn’t continue and his opponent being disqualified.
So, Sterling won the title in less than satisfying fashion and everyone was eager to see an immediate rematch, but the newly crowned champ opted to undergo neck surgery instead and issues stemming from that have kept him out of action since.
As such, Yan went on to compete for the interim title against Cory Sandhagen in October and beat him by unanimous decision and now gets a second chance to fight Sterling almost a year-to-the-day since their first battle.