Cris ‘Cyborg’ Justino’s women’s featherweight title defense against Holly Holm has been confirmed as the main event to next month’s UFC 219 after it was confirmed by Lance Pugmire of the LA Times that the lightweight bout between Khabib Nurmagomedov and Edson Barboza will serve as the event’s co-main event.
It had been speculated that the promotion was looking for another top level bout to bolster the card for their year-end card on December 30th but they have settled on the Cyborg vs. Holm bout, originally confirmed on November 17th, to headline the card.
When the bout was first announced it was not yet confirmed as the featured attraction to the card which will take place in the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas.
— Lance Pugmire (@latimespugmire) November 28, 2017
This will be Holm’s second attempt to claim the promotion’s 145-pound title following a contentious loss in her first attempt against Germaine de Randamie, who was subsequently stripped of the title by the promotion. If successful, Holm will become the latest UFC athlete to have held titles in two separate weight classes. Holm previously defeated Ronda Rousey two years ago to claim the UFC’s women’s bantamweight title.
The c0-main event between Nurmagomedov and Barboza will shed some light on the title picture in the lightweight division currently ruled by Conor McGregor, with the winner placing themselves in the upper echelon of contenders at 155-pounds. Tony Ferguson currently holds the interim title in the division, which directly aligns him with McGregor when the Irishman returns to competition.
UFC 219 takes place in the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas on December 30th and also features bouts between Jimmie Rivera and John Lineker, as well as Cynthia Calvillo defending her undefeated record against former strawweight champion Carla Esparza.