Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) was able to preserve the middleweight main event between Sean Strickland and Jared Cannonier despite a serious finger injury suffered by “Tarzan.” Originally planned for mid-October, their 185-pound showdown will now headline the promotion’s Dec. 17 “Fight Night” card at the APEX facility in Las Vegas, Nevada.
“Jared, you are a fucking gentleman, sir,” Strickland told Helen Yee. “You are a classy, classy motherfucker. I appreciate you, that you were understanding, that you understood I had surgery and you prolonged it. Or maybe you just think I’m an easy fight and you’re gonna fuck me up. Either way Jared, I appreciate you sir, you are a fucking gentleman.”
Strickland (25-4) is looking to rebound from a knockout loss to Brazilian terror Alex Pereira at UFC 276, a first-round finish that booted “Tarzan” from the 185-pound title chase. Similarly, Cannonier (15-6) came up short in his bid to dethrone reigning middleweight champion Israel Adesanya after five rounds of action at UFC 276 last July.
In addition to the Strickland vs. Cannonier main event, the promotion’s Dec. 17 fight card will also feature the middleweight collision between Julian Marquez and Deron Winn. Elsewhere in the lineup, Tafon Nchukwi battles Jamal Pogues in a light heavyweight matchup, while Sergey Morozov and Journey Newson hook ‘em up at 135 pounds.