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Brian Kelleher now faces Kevin Natividad at UFC Vegas 9 after Ricky Simon withdrawal

Kelleher v Osbourne Photo by Steve Marcus/Getty Images

Ricky Simon was forced out of his fight against Brian Kelleher — which was set for UFC Vegas 9 this Saturday (Sept. 5, 2020) inside UFC APEX in Las Vegas, Nevada — after one of his cornermen tested positive for COVID-19.

According to MMA Junkie, stepping up to fill the void is Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) newcomer, Kevin Natividad, who answered the call for the Bantamweight bout after the promotion came calling a week from fight night.

Natividad is currently on a five-fight win streak, four of them coming under the Legacy Fighting Alliance (LFA) banner. Overall, “Quicksand” has racked up a 9-1 record since making his pro mixed martial arts (MMA) debut in 2016.

Kelleher, meanwhile, has becoming “Mr. Dependable” for the promotion as this will be his third fight since May where he defeated Hunter Azure via knockout (see it here). He returned less than one month later at UFC 250, though he ultimately came up short against Cody Stamann. That brings us to present date as “Boom” looks to get back into the win column against very dangerous UFC rookie.

UFC Vegas 9 — which will stream on ESPN+ — will be headlined by a Heavyweight showdown between Alistair Overeem and Augusto SakaiI. In the co-main event, Ovince Saint Preux takes on Alonzo Menifield.

Remember that MMAmania.com will deliver LIVE round-by-round, blow-by-blow coverage of the entire UFC Vegas 9 fight card this weekend right here, starting with the ESPN+ “Prelims” matches, which are scheduled to begin at 6 p.m. ET, then the remaining main card balance on ESPN+ 8 p.m. ET.

To check out the latest and greatest UFC Vegas 9: “Overeem vs. Sakai” news and notes be sure to hit up our comprehensive event archive right here.