A middleweight title clash between current champion Israel Adesanya and Jared Cannonier has officially been confirmed as the main event for UFC 276 on July 2nd in Las Vegas during International Fight Week.
The two fighters actually competed on the same card last time out at UFC 271 in February, with Adesanya earning a unanimous decision victory over Robert Whittaker in their title rematch, while Cannonier KO’d Derrick Brunson in the second round of their fight.
Afterwards, Adesanya had recognised Cannonier’s accomplishment and predicted that they would be fighting next.
“I am the champ. You want it, come get it!” Adesanya had stated in his post-fight interview.
“I’m the big dog in the yard and I know the other dog, Jared Cannonier, just did some work tonight. So yeah, I’m pissing in his case the next time in June. Watch me!”
The current No.2 contender in the division, Cannonier has gone 5-1 in his last six Octagon outings, picking up other wins over the likes of Kelvin Gastelum, Jack Hermansson, Anderson Silva and David Branch, while his solitary loss during that spell was by unanimous decision against ex-champ Robert Whittaker in 2020.
As for Adesanya, he remains undefeated in his 22-fight career run at middleweight, beating a who’s who of the division during that time to claim the No.3 spot on the UFC’s pound-for-pound list, though he does hold a loss at light-heavyweight after an unsuccessful attempt to take the 205lb title from Jan Blachowicz back in early 2020, losing out by unanimous decision.
Adesanya vs. Cannonier fronts a star-studded UFC 276 line-up that will also feature a featherweight trilogy title fight encounter between Alexander Volkanovski and Max Holloway, while Sean Strickland fights Alex Pereira, Sean O’Malley goes up against Pedro Munhoz, Robbie Lawler locks horns with Bryan Barberena and Miesha Tate faces Lauren Murphy.