Kelvin Gastelum will remain on UFC 273 but it will not be against Nassourdine Imavov as originally expected.
Gastelum was supposed to take on the surging French prospect, but on Monday it was revealed Imavov was out of the fight. However, according to ESPN’s Brett Okamoto, Gastelum will now fight Dricus Du Plessis at middleweight.
Kelvin Gastelum (16-8 and one No Contest) is currently on a two-fight losing streak and is just 1-5 in his last six bouts overall. After back-to-back wins over Michael Bisping and Jacare Souza at middleweight, he then lost three in a row to Israel Adesanya for the interim belt, Darren Till, and was submitted by Jack Hermansson in just 78 seconds. Gastelum snapped that skid with a decision victory over Ian Heinisch but has since lost back-to-back main event scraps to Robert Whittaker and Jared Cannonier.
Gastelum is currently ranked 10th at middleweight and is desperately in need of win. He now gets to face an unranked opponent and should he win, he’d be right back in the conversation of facing a top-10 opponent.
Dricus Du Plessis (16-2) is 2-0 in the UFC with two knockout wins as he last fought back in July and finished Trevin Giles, prior to that, he knocked out Markus Perez in his promotional debut. He’s the former KSW welterweight champion and EFC middleweight champion.
With Gastelum now fighting Du Plessis, Anthony Hernandez, Du Plessis’ original opponent at UFC 273, will now face UFC newcomer, Josh Fremd on the same card which goes down in Jacksonville, Florida on April 9.
With Gastelum now fighting Du Plessis, UFC 273 is as follows:
- Alexander Volkanovski vs. Korean Zombie
- Aljamain Sterling vs. Petr Yan
- Gilbert Burns vs. Khamzat Chimaev
- Mackenzie Dern vs. Tecia Torres
- Kelvin Gastelum vs. Dricus Du Plessis
- Ian Garry vs. Darian Weeks
- Aspen Ladd vs. Raquel Pennington
- Anthony Hernandez vs. Josh Fremd
- Jairzinho Rozenstruik vs. Marcin Tybura
- Ilir Latifi vs. Aleksei Oleinik
- Mickey Gall vs. Mike Malott
- Pat Sabatini vs. Gavin Tucker
- Julio Arce vs. Daniel Santos
- Mark Madsen vs. Vinc Pichel
- Kay Hansen vs. Piera Rodriguez
Who do you think will win at UFC 273, Kelvin Gastelum or Dricus Du Plessis?