It seems Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) matchmakers were a bit too quick to pull the trigger on booking a fight between Raoni Barcelos and Merab Dvalsihvili because the Nevada State Athletic Commission (NSAC) has halted those plans.
According to John Morgan of MMA Junkie, the fight — which was pegged to go down at UFC Vegas 16 on Dec. 5, 2020 — has been scratched because Barcelos would still be under the mandated suspension he was issued following his three-round war against Khalid Taha on Nov. 7, 2020. The win gave Barcelos his fifth straight win inside the Octagon, ninth overall, to improve his impressive record to 16-1.
Dvalishvili, meanwhile, is currently riding a five-fight win streak and was last seen taking out John Dodson at UFC 252. So while a fight between these two talented Bantamweights would have been absolutely fireworks, we will have to wait a bit longer to see when the promotion can officially book it again. Dvalishvili was originally set to face Cody Stamman, but those plans were also scratched after Stamman was forced out for undisclosed reasons.
The ESPN+-streamed event is set to feature a Middleweight bout between Jack Hermansson and Kevin Holland, as well Bethe Correia taking on Wu Yanan in what will be “Pitbull’s” final fight inside the Octagon.