Heavyweights will square off inside the octagon in May.
Multiple people with knowledge of the promotion’s plans confirmed to MMA Fighting that a matchup between Justin Tafa and Jared Vanderaa will take place at the UFC’s event on May 22, which does not currently have a venue or location announced.
Tafa will be looking to get back in the win column after being on the wrong end of a controversial split decision against Carlos Felipe at UFC Fight Island 7 in January. According to MMA Decisions, 16 of 20 media members scored the fight for Tafa. “Bad Man” earned his first UFC victory at UFC 247 in February 2020 with a first-round TKO win over Juan Adams.
Vanderaa makes his sophomore octagon appearance after a second-round TKO loss to Sergey Spivak at UFC Vegas 19 in February. “The Mountain” earned a contract on Dana White’s Contender Series this past summer with a first-round stoppage of Harry Hunsucker in November.
The UFC’s May 22 event will also feature a pivotal strawweight matchup between Yan Xiaonan and Carla Esparza.