If all had gone according to plan, UFC Vegas 58 on July 9, 2022, would have featured a Bantamweight showdown between former champ Cody Garbrandt and Rani Yahya. Unfortunately, that bout was scrapped after Yahya suffered a neck injury in training.
Now MMAmania.com has confirmed via sources close to the fight that Garbrandt vs. Yahya has been rebooked for an Oct. 1, 2022, UFC Fight Night-themed show. The event is set to be headlined by a women’s Strawweight bout between Mackenzie Dern vs. Yan Xiaonan. No location has been announced for the card at this time, although UFC Apex in Las Vegas, Nevada, is still the venue of choice for most non-major “Fight Night” cards.
Garbrandt is on a 1-5 skid and most recently lost his Flyweight debut to Kai Kara-France via first round technical knockout in Dec. 2021. He’s returning to Bantamweight where he’s spent the vast majority of his career and won the 135-pound belt off Dominick Cruz in 2016. His reign was a short one, though. He lost the title to T.J. Dillashaw in his first title defense, and then was defeated in an immediate rematch several months later.
One year ago today, with his back against the wall, literally and figuratively, Cody Garbrandt flatlined Raphael Assuncão.— Alex Behunin (@AlexBehunin) June 6, 2021
Yahya comes into this fight with Garbrandt on a two-fight win streak and is 2-0-1 over the past two years. The 37-year-old grappler continues to hang in the ultra-competitive 135-pound division, despite being a long-time veteran who came into the World Extreme Cagefighting (WEC) back in 2007. Yahya has a 28-10 record in mixed martial arts (MMA), with 21 submission wins ... and zero (technical) knockout wins.
When originally announced, many saw this as UFC’s attempt to give Garbrandt a rare turnaround fight, which only seems fair after matching him with No. 7-ranked Bantamweight Rob Font and No. 3-seeded Flyweight Kara-France. Neither Garbrandt nor Yahya are ranked at Bantamweight right now, and Yahya is one of the few UFC veterans with no knockouts to his name.
That perception will only increase now that UFC has rebooked Garbrandt and Yahya four months after their original booking fell through. “No Love” will still have to watch out for Yahya as the Brazilian is known for his aggressive and unconventional submission game.