Paige VanZant’s UFC return could be coming soon.
VanZant’s return is reportedly targeted for the UFC’s debut event on ESPN set to go down on January 18, 2019, according to a report from MMA Fighting.
VanZant’s return is in motion to be against Rachael Ostovich. The popular women’s flyweight contender has lost two straight bouts in the Octagon. The most recent was a decision to Jessica-Rose Clark in her 125-pound debut this January. VanZant has been dealing with a broken arm ever since. She has been unable to fight because of the injury and is facing another yearlong layoff.
Before that, Michelle Waterson submitted her in her final strawweight fight in late 2016 over a year prior.
VanZant won her first three UFC fights over Kailn Curran, Felice Herrig, and Alex Chambers to become one of the 115-pound division’s fastest-rising stars. Rose Namajunas halted her rise in a brutal beating. VanZant then gained a huge following on “Dancing With The Stars.” The following boosts her scope of attention to this day as one of the UFC’s most popular female fighters.
Ostovich has gone 1-1 in her UFC stint. She appeared on The Ultimate Fighter 26, losing to Barb Honchak in the quarterfinals. Ostovich submitted Karine Gevorgyan via armbar to win her UFC debut at the show’s finale. She then fought at the TUF 27 Finale this July. Montana De La Rose submitted her rear-naked choke. Ostovich maintains an enthusiastic following herself dating back to her Invicta days.
No bouts have been officially announced for the UFC’s debut on ESPN. The two sports giants signed a monstrous television deal earlier this year.
A potentially anticipated welterweight bout between Robbie Lawler and Stephen Thompson has also been rumored for the card, however.