Two-time UFC lightweight title challenger Gray Maynard, who now competes in the UFC featherweight division, will face a stiff test in his next fight. The hard-nosed veteran will be taking on Japanese Team Alpha Male prospect Teruto Ishihara. Maynard and Ishihara will collide at the Ultimate Fighter 25 Finale this July 7, in the midst of the UFC’s International Fight Week, in glimmering Las Vegas, Nevada.
The UFC officially announced this featherweight booking shortly after a report from the Las Vegas Review-Journal.
Maynard will enter this fight having recently dropped to featherweight after TKO losses to TJ Grant, Nate Diaz, Ross Pearson and a decision loss to Alexander Yakovlev at lightweight. His first fight in the featherweight division saw him pick up a decision win over Fernando Bruno. His next fight at featherweight saw him give up a controversial decision to BJJ specialist Ryan Hall. Maynard, who is best known for a pair of unforgettable title fights with Frankie Edgar, is 12-6-1 overall.
Ishihara, meanwhile, 9-3-2 in sum. In his his first four bouts in the Octagon, he battled Mizuto Hirota to a draw, knocked out Julian Erosa and Horacio Gutierrez, and most recently, gave up a decision to UFC Nashville main eventer Artem Lobov.
The only other confirmed fight for this card will see Canadian TUF winner Elias Theodorou battle Hawaii’s Brad Tavares in a compelling middleweight showdown. Theodorou will enter the contest having scored back-to-back wins over Sam Alvey and Cezar “Mutante” Ferreia, while Tavares is riding a split win over Caio Magalhaes.
The Ultimate Fighter 25, which will be coached by bantamweight champ Cody Garbrandt and former champ TJ Dillashaw, will feature a cast of Ultimate Fighter veterans, competing for a new UFC contract. The show’s first episode airs tonight (April 19).
Who do you think wins this Gray Maynard vs. Teruto Ishihara featherweight bout? Sound off, PENN Nation!
This article first appeared on BJPenn.com on 4/19/2017.