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Sean Strickland steps in for injured Kelvin Gastelum, faces Nassourdine Imavov in new UFC Vegas 67 main event

2023 has gotten off to a chaotic start in mixed martial arts (MMA).

ESPN’s Brett Okamoto confirmed today (Mon., Jan. 9, 2023) that the first Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) event of the year has suffered a main event change right at the start of fight week. Kelvin Gastelum (17-8) has been injured out of his headlining clash against Nassourdine Imavov (12-3) this weekend (Sat., Jan. 14, 2023) and will be replaced by Sean Strickland (25-5).

The bout’s weight class has been elevated from Middleweight to Light Heavyweight.

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LIGHTWEIGHT CONTENDER COLLISION! Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) returns home to its APEX facility in Las Vegas, Nevada, on Sat., Nov. 18, 2023, with a Middleweight main event showdown between top-ranked division contenders, Brendan Allen (No. 10) and Paul Craig (No. 13), both of whom are looking to inch closer to the 185-pound Top 5. In UFC Vegas 82’s co-main event, Michael Morales vs. Jake Matthews will lock horns in an exciting Welterweight collision.

Don’t miss a single second of face-punching action!

“Kelvin Gastelum had to withdraw from his fight vs Nassourdine Imavov after taking an incidental knee in practice this afternoon,” Reported Michael Wonsover on Twitter. “@KelvinGastelum did everything in his power to make the fight, but ultimately had to drop out. He’s in good spirits and recovering.”

Strickland closed out 2022 as one-half of the main event for the last UFC event of the year on Dec. 17, 2022. “Tarzan” came up short via a closely fought split decision with Jared Cannonier that he feels he should have gotten the nod in.

UFC Vegas 67 marks the rising Imavov’s first time in a UFC main event as he looks to extend his impressive win streak to four straight.

Check out UFC Vegas 67’s full lineup below:

UFC Vegas 67 Main Card On ESPN+ (7 p.m. ET):

  • 205 lbs.: Nassourdine Imavov vs. Sean Strickland
  • 145 lbs.: Dan Ige vs. Damon Jackson
  • 185 lbs.: Punahele Soriano vs. Roman Kopylov
  • 135 lbs.: Raquel Pennington vs. Ketlen Vieira
  • 135 lbs.: Umar Nurmagomedov vs. Raoni Barcelos

UFC Vegas 67 Prelims Card On ESPN+ (4 p.m. ET):

  • 185 lbs.: Abdul Razak Alhassan vs. Claudio Ribeiro
  • 155 lbs.: Mateusz Rebecki vs. Nick Fiore
  • 135 lbs.: Javid Basharat vs. Mateus Mendonca
  • 125 lbs.: Carlos Hernandez vs. Allan Nascimento
  • 145 lbs.: Daniel Argueta vs. Isaac Dulgarian
  • 125 lbs.: Charles Johnson vs. Jimmy Flick
  • 135 lbs.: Priscila Cachoeira vs. Sijara Eubanks
  • 145 lbs.: Jarno Errens vs. David Onama

*Fight card, bout order and number of fights remain subject to change.*


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