Recently retired UFC lightweight contender, Paul Felder will return to the commentary booth this weekend in Glendale, Arizona for UFC 263 at the Gila River Arena — joining long-time booth stalwart, Joe Rogan in a colour commentary role, as well as lead play-by-play commentator, Jon Anik.
Philidelphia native, Felder will replace former UFC heavyweight and light heavyweight champion, Daniel Cormier in the three-man commentary booth, with Louisiana native, Cormier usually taking his seat alongside Rogan and Anik during North American-based cards.
Headlining the event, which features two undisputed title fights; middleweight champion, Israel Adesanya rematches Marvin Vettori following a split decision win over the Italian at UFC Fight Night Glendale back in April of 2018 at the same venue.
Attempting to rebound from his first professional mixed martial arts blemish, Adesnaya suffered a unanimous decision loss to Jan Blachowicz at light heavyweight in March in an unsuccessful bid to become a two-weight champion held simultaneously. In the midst of a five-fight undefeated streak since that 2018 loss, Kings MMA standout, Vettori most recently lodged a unanimous decision win over short-notice replacement, Kevin Holland at UFC on ABC 2 in April.
In the night’s co-headliner, flyweight spoils are up for grabs as reigning champion, Deiveson Figueiredo rematches challenger, Brandon Moreno for the undisputed title following a Fight of the Year contender at UFC 255 in November last, which ended in a majority draw.
Turning in a truly spectacular five round back-and-forth, Figueiredo successfully retained his title as a result of the majority draw result, after he was deducted a point in the third round after he landed an unintentional groin strike.
In another five round sanctioned fight, the first of its kind, a welterweight showdown between the #3 ranked, Leon Edwards, and The Ultimate Fighter 5 victor, Nate Diaz comes in as the third fight from the top — and the first bout in promotional history to score a sanctioned five round limit, without featuring a title on the line, or coming as a main event.
Per the report from MMA Junkie reporter, Mike Bohn — the aforenoted play-by-play lead, Anik will host the post-fight show from the desk, alongside former middleweight and light heavyweight title challenger, Chael Sonnen, as well as former lightweight title chaser and former Strikeforce lightweight best, Gilbert Melendez.
Megan Olivi will also return and replace Heidi Androl in a roving reporter role as she provides updates both post and pre-fight, as well as conducting interviews with fighters throughout the fight. ESPN MMA reporter, Brett Okamoto will also join on the desk during the post-fight segment to provide updates and analyse proceedings.
Returning to schedule, veteran announcer, Bruce Buffer makes his return, replacing Joe Martinez who handled announcements at UFC Vegas 28 last weekend at the UFC Apex facility in Las Vegas, Nevada.