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Former UFC welterweight champions rematch in Minneapolis

Tyron Woodley meets Robbie Lawler in UFC Minneapolis headliner

Las Vegas, May 1: UFC returns to Minneapolis for the first time in almost seven years with an action-packed card headlined by a thrilling rematch between former welterweight champions.

The No. 1 ranked contender Tyron Woodley takes on No. 10 Robbie Lawler in the main event, while No.1 ranked flyweight contender Jussier Formiga looks to even the score against No. 2 Joseph Benavidez in the potential co-main event.

UFC FIGHT NIGHT ON ESPN: WOODLEY vs. LAWLER 2 will air live from Target Center exclusively on ESPN and ESPN Deportes at 9 p.m. ET on Saturday, June 29, with prelims kicking off at 6 p.m. ET. Doors open at 5 p.m. ET. All UFC live events on ESPN will also be available in English and Spanish. In India, Sony Pictures Network will air the main card live.

A decorated grappler with heavy hands, Woodley (19-4-1, fighting out of St. Louis, Mo.) dethroned Lawler via first-round knockout in July 2016, before holding the welterweight championship for more than two years.

During his reign, he compiled successful title defenses against Stephen Thompson, Demian Maia and Darren Till. Woodley now looks to deliver another dominant performance and work his way back to a title shot.

A dangerous KO artist, Lawler (28-13 1NC, fighting out of Coconut Creek, Fla.) first captured the championship against Johny Hendricks in late 2014. Lawler then went on to have epic title defenses against Rory MacDonald and Carlos Condit.

Lawler has also netted wins over Donald Cerrone, Matt Brown and Josh Koscheck during his career. He now hopes to score a measure of revenge against Woodley to re-assert himself as a title threat.

A black belt in both Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu and judo, Formiga (23-5, fighting out of Natal, Brazil) aims to avenge a 2013 loss to Benavidez. A perennial contender, he has delivered spectacular victories against Sergio Pettis, Ben Nguyen, Dustin Ortiz and Wilson Reis. He now hopes to push his win streak to four fights and secure his first UFC title shot.

A two-time title challenger, Benavidez (27-5, fighting out of Las Cruces, N.M.) has remained a top contender in the flyweight division since its inception in 2012.

A talented grappler with KO power, Benavidez has picked up impressive wins over current champion Henry Cejudo, Alex Perez, Tim Elliott and Dustin Ortiz (twice). He is now ready to stop Formiga a second time to earn another crack at the belt.

Announced bouts on the card include:

• Former welterweight title challenger and No. 12 ranked contender Demian Maia (26-9, fighting out of Sao Paulo, Brazil) looks to stop surging Anthony Rocco Martin (16-4, fighting out of Coconut Creek, Fla.)

• Minnesota heavyweight Maurice Greene (7-3, fighting out of St. Cloud, Minn.) looks to continue his hot streak against battle-tested Junior Albini (14-5, fighting out of Paranagua, Parana, Brazil)

• In an exciting lightweight bout, Drew Dober (20-9, fighting out of Denver, Colo.) takes on Marco Polo Reyes (8-6, fighting out of Tepic, Nayarit, Mexico)

• Undefeated Dana White's Tuesday Night Contender Series signee Alonzo Menifield (8-0, fighting out of Dallas, Tex.) meets submission ace Paul Craig (11-3, fighting out of Coatbridge, Scotland)

• Chas Skelly (17-3, fighting out of Arlington, Tex.) meets Jordan Griffin (17-6, fighting out of Milwaukee, Wisc.) in a clash of featherweight standouts

• Undefeated newcomer Roman Dolidze (6-0, fighting out of Odessa, Ukraine) squares off with Vinicius Moreira (9-2, fighting out of Brasilia, Brazil)

• Highly-touted light heavyweight prospect Dalcha Lungiambula (9-1, fighting out of Cape Town, South Africa) debuts against talented striker Justin Ledet (9-2 1NC, fighting out of Rosharon, Tex.)

Source: Press Release

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Story first published: Wednesday, May 1, 2019, 10:39 [IST]
Other articles published on May 1, 2019
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