With his contractual impasse with the UFC now behind him, Ireland’s Joe Duffy has received his latest octagon assignment.
Donegal man Duffy (17-2) will face fellow lightweight James Vick (11-1) at UFC 217 in Madison Square Garden on November 4th in what is the latest addition to the UFC’s bumper return to New York City. The UFC announced the bout via a social media post early on Monday.
— UFC Europe (@UFCEurope) September 25, 2017
Duffy’s last bout, a unanimous decision victory against Reza Madadi in London last March, was the final fight on his UFC contract. Other promotions, most notably Bellator, had investigated the option of offering a deal to the Irishman once his exclusive negotiation period with the UFC was over. Ultimately, however, Duffy opted to re-sign with the UFC and agreed terms on a new 7-fight deal during the summer.
The first bout on Duffy’s new deal is an interesting one. Vick was a contestant on The Ultimate Fighter Live, losing to eventual winner Michael Chiesa in the semi-finals and his since gone 7-1 in the UFC’s 155-pound frame, holding wins over the likes of Nick Hein and Abel Trujilo. His sole loss inside the UFC came against Beneil Dariush more than a year ago at UFC 199.
The Duffy-Vick clash will be a bout between two of the lightweight division’s finer boxers. Duffy holds a 7-0 record in professional boxing while Vick, a two time Golden Gloves winner, holds a 17-3 record in the amateurs.
UFC 217 will be headlined by Michael Bisping vs. Georges St-Pierre and, much like last year’s maiden appearance in The Garden, will have two further title fights on the card with Cody Garbrandt defending his bantamweight title against T.J. Dillashaw, while Joanna Jedrzeczyk taking on Rose Namajunas.