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Raquel Pennington vs. Irena Aldana 2 set to headline UFC Vegas 73

UFC Fight Night: Weigh-ins Photo by Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images

Raquel Pennington and Irene Aldana are officially set to run things back.

Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) announced today (Tues., April 18, 2023) that its May 20, 2023, UFC Vegas 73 event will be headlined by a pivotal Bantamweight contender rematch between Pennington (15-9) and Aldana (14-6). The pair first went to battle in July 2019 with Pennington besting her Mexican counterpart via a split decision.

The announcement of the rematch comes after UFC booked the division’s champion, Amanda Nunes, in a trilogy against the former titleholder, Julianna Pena. Pennington vs. Aldana 2 was previously linked to UFC San Antonio last month (March 25, 2023), but because it fell through, many in the community assumed it meant Aldana was getting her long-awaited title shot.

Aldana, 35, has gone 4-1 since first facing Pennington, winning three of those four via knockout or technical knockout. The boxing specialist last defeated Macy Chiasson with a Knockout of the Year candidate up-kick to the body in round three at UFC 279 in Sept. 2022 (watch highlights).

Pennington, on the other hand, is 5-1 since defeating Aldana, winning five in a row after her rematch with Holly Holm resulted in a unanimous decision loss. The winner at UFC Vegas 73 will surely find themselves next in line for a title shot and for “Rocky,” it would be the second of her career after challenging Nunes in May 2018 at UFC 224. Pennington lost the bout via a fifth-round technical knockout (punches).

Check out UFC Vegas 73’s initial lineup below:

  • 135 lbs.: Raquel Pennington vs. Irene Aldana
  • 185 lbs.: Edmen Shahbazyan vs. Anthony Hernandez
  • 265 lbs.: Ilir Latifi vs. Rodrigo Nascimento
  • 170 lbs.: Orion Cosce vs. Gilbert Urbina
  • 170 lbs.: Andre Fialho vs. Joaquin Buckley
  • 155 lbs.: Michael Johnson vs. Carlos Diego Ferreira
  • 155 lbs.: Hayisaer Maheshate vs. Viacheslav Borschev
  • 155 lbs.: Chase Hooper vs. Nick Fiore
  • 115 lbs.: Karolina Kowalkiewicz vs. Vanessa Demopoulos
  • 125 lbs.: Natalia Silva vs. Victoria Leonardo
  • 175 lbs.: Abdul Razak Alhassan vs. Brunno Ferreira


Who wins?

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