A rescheduled middleweight matchup between the #11 ranked former interim title challenger, Kelvin Gastelum, and the streaking MMA Factory staple, the #12 rated challenger, Nassourdine Imavov is slated to take main event honors at UFC Vegas 67 on January 14. next from the UFC Apex facility in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Gastelum and Imavov were initially scheduled to fight at UFC 273 back in April of this year, however, VISA issues ruled the latter from the fight and the bout was cancelled. Imavov was then replaced by Dricus Du Plessis, however, Gastelum was then removed from the fight after suffering an undisclosed injury.

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Kelvin Gastelum books his third straight UFC headliner

In the midst of a two-fight losing skid in consecutive main event outings, Kelvin Gastelum, a nine-year UFC veteran, most recently dropped a unanimous decision loss to recent title challenger, Jared Cannonier back in August.

As for Imavov, the Fernand Lopez trainee featured at UFC Paris back at the beginning of this month, turning in consecutive victory number three with an impressive unanimous judging win over Joaquin Buckley at the Accor Arena in the French capital. French outlet, La Sueur was first to announce Gastelum’s main event rebooking against Imavov. 

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Suffering defeats in five of his last six professional appearances, Kelvin Gastelum’s sole success in that period came in the form of a unanimous decision win over promotional veteran, Ian Heinisch at UFC 258 back in February of last year.

Competing for the interim middleweight crown back in 2019 against current champion, Israel Adesanya, Gastelum pushed the City Kickboxing staple the distance before suffering an eventual decision loss.

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The Ulitmate Fighter 17 victor has landed notable Octagon wins over the likes of Uriah Hall, Rick Story, Jake Ellenberger, Nate Marquardt, Johny Hendricks, Tim Kennedy, as well as former middleweight champion, Michael Bisping, and Ronaldo Souza.

12-3 as a professional, Dagestan-born talent, Imavov added the aforenoted, Buckey to a string of prior stoppage triumphs over both Edmen Shahbazyan, and common-foe, Heinisch last year.

In his sole promotional blemish, Imavov suffered a majority decision loss to Phil Hawes in February of last year. Landing five knockout wins to go with four further submission finishes, Imavov landed in the UFC with a decision success against Jordan Williams. 

Aspiring mixed martial arts reporter based in Ireland. Follow along at @Ross_Markey on Twitter for all the latest news, fight announcements, opinion, and feature pieces.