For several weeks, we have known that a light heavyweight scrap between British knockout artist Jimi Manuwa and American wrestler Corey Anderson would serve as the main event of the UFC’s March 18 return to London, England. Now, we also know the card’s co-main event.
London’s co-main event spot will be filled by a welterweight scrap between fan favorite striker Alan Jouban, and Icelandic grappling specialist Gunnar Nelson. This booking was initially reported by @TalkMMA on Twitter, and confirmed by a Tuesday press release from the UFC.
Nelson, who frequently trains alongside MMA megastar Conor McGregor at SBG Ireland, has not been seen in action in almost a year. When he last stepped into the cage, he took out dangerous striking specialist Albert Tumenov with second-round neck crank. His most recent wins before that saw him give up a decision to grappling whiz Demian Maia, stop Brandon Thatch with a first-round rear-naked crank, and surrender a split win to Rick Story. The Iceland star currently owns an overall record of 15-2-1.
Jouban, who moonlights as a professional model, last stepped into the cage in December, when he scored a dominant decision win over popular brawler “Platinum” Mike Perry. With this win, the American extended his win-streak three, as he has also recently defeated Belal Muhammad by decision and Brandon O’Reilly by first-round TKO. His most recent loss occurred in 2014, when he succumbed to first-round strikes from Albert Tumenov. He’s 15-4 overall.
In addition to its Manuwa vs. Anderson main event and new Jouban vs. Nelson co-main event, highlights of the UFC London lineup include a bantamweight bout between the retiring Brad Pickett and Enrique Briones, a lightweight bout between “Irish” Joe Duffy and Reza Madadi, a featherweight fight between prospects Arnold Allen and Makwan Amirkhani, and a heavyweight battle between Tim Johnson and Daniel Omielanczuk.
Are you excited for this UFC London scrap? Sound off, PENN Nation!
This article first appeared on BJPenn.com on 2/14/2017.