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Bryan Barberena headed to Las Vegas not knowing who (or if) he will be fighting | UFC Vegas 44 (Updated)

Bryan Barberena was in line to face Matt Brown in what was sure to be a highly-entertaining Welterweight bout this Saturday (Dec. 4, 2021) at UFC Vegas 44 in Las Vegas, Nevada. But as luck would have it, Brown was forced out of the fight after testing positive for COVID-19, leaving “Bam Bam” without an opponent.

The news of the cancelation was seven days ago and UFC has not given Barberena any indication that it will have a suitable replacement for him to remain on the card. Undeterred, Barberena is still making his way over to “Sin City” without knowing who — or if — he will be fighting this weekend.

That’s according to MMA reporter Alex Behunin, who got the word straight from “Bam Bam,” who said he is down to fight anyone as long as he gets to compete.

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STRAWWEIGHT SHOWDOWN! Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) returns to UFC Apex in Las Vegas, Nevada, on Sat., Oct. 1, 2022, with an exciting women’s sStrawweight contenders’ bout that will see No. 5-ranked Mackenzie Dern clash with No. 6-seeded Yan Xiaonan. In UFC Vegas 61’s action-packed co-main event, exciting Welterweight veterans Randy Brown and Francisco Trinaldo will hook ‘em up inside the Octagon.

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Barberena is hoping to bounce back after suffering a tough loss at the hands of Jason Witt earlier this year, his third loss in the last four outings inside the Octagon. Despite his recent woes, Barberena has never been one to shy away from a fight, taking on some of the best the 170-pound division has to offer, including Colby Covington, Leon Edwards and Vicente Luque.

Now, all “Bam Bam” can do is hope the promotion can find him an opponent willing to take on the challenge on less than one week’s notice. Still, one would have thought UFC matchmakers would’ve given Barberena and his team some kind of heads up as to whether or not they had someone willing to step in before he made the trip.


Darian Weeks — who is 5-0 as a professional — has agreed to step in to face Barberena on short notice in what will be his UFC debut.

Remember that will deliver LIVE round-by-round, blow-by-blow coverage of the entire UFC Vegas 44 fight card right here, starting with the ESPN+ “Prelims” matches, which are scheduled to begin at 7 p.m. ET, then the remaining main card balance on ESPN at 10 p.m. ET.

To check out the latest and greatest UFC Vegas 44: “Aldo vs. Font” news and notes be sure to hit up our comprehensive event archive right here.

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