It looks like UFC 289 already has a main event in place for the promotion’s return to Canada.
According to UFC president Dana White (via TSN’s Aaron Bronsteter), a women’s bantamweight trilogy bout between reigning UFC champion Amanda Nunes and former titleholder Julianna Pena will headline the event, which will take place on June 10 live on ESPN+ pay-per-view (PPV) from inside Rogers Arena.
Just spoke with UFC President Dana White who confirms that Amanda Nunes vs. Julianna Peña 3 will headline UFC 289— Aaron Bronsteter (@aaronbronsteter) April 7, 2023
This may not be the fight that fans were hoping to headline UFC’s long-awaited return to Canada, but the matchup had to happen at some point. Pena shocked the mixed martial arts (MMA) universe back at UFC 269 in Dec. 2021 for their first meeting when she submitted Nunes to win the title. The loss snapped a legendary 12-fight win streak for “Lioness.”
UFC gave Nunes some time to recover after her first defeat since 2014 and ended up booking the rematch for UFC 277 in July 2022. Nunes completely dominated the reboot and ended up defeating Pena via unanimous decision. That victory gave “Lioness” back her champ-champ status as she is still UFC’s reigning women’s featherweight titleholder.
While this is a big opportunity for Pena to stay in the limelight and give herself another chance to win UFC gold it is undoubtedly a more important fight for Nunes. The long-time women’s bantamweight queen is already one of the top 3 greatest female fighters of all time, but a win over Pena again would solidify her status as G.O.AT.
The UFC 289 current fight card lineup is as follows:
135 lbs.: Amanda Nunes vs. Julianna Pena 3
170 lbs.: Stephen Thompson vs. Michel Pereira
125 lbs.: Miranda Maverick vs. Jasmine Jasudavicius
185 lbs.: Eryk Anders vs. Marc-Andre Barriault
115 lbs.: Diana Belbita vs. Maria Oliveira
145 lbs.: Blake Bilder vs. Kyle Nelson
125 lbs.: Matt Schnell vs. David Dvorak
145 lbs.: Dan Ige vs. Nate Landwehr
Remember that MMAmania.com will deliver LIVE round-by-round, blow-by-blow coverage of the entire UFC 289 fight card right here, starting with the early ESPN+ “Prelims” matches online, which are scheduled to begin at 7 p.m. ET, then the remaining undercard on ESPN/ESPN+ at 8 p.m. ET, before the PPV main card start time at 10 p.m. ET on ESPN+ PPV.
To check out the latest and greatest UFC 289: “Nunes vs. Aldana” news and notes be sure to hit up our comprehensive event archive right here.