UFC 235 card finalized as Saenz steps up to face Vera

UFC 235

With Frankie Saenz replacing Thomas Almeida (eye injury) on short notice against Marlon Vera, the loaded UFC 235 is now finalized with 13 bouts.

ESPN was the first to report the news regarding the switch up in this UFC 235 bantamweight matchup.

Saenz (12-8) looks to make it three-straight wins for the first time since Aug. 2015 when he faces Vera on Mar. 2 card. The 38-year-old was nearly released from the UFC in 2017 after losing three fights in a row to Urijah Faber, Eddie Wineland and Augusto Mendes. However the Arizona native has since picked up back-to-back victories over Merab Dvalishvili and most recently Henry Briones at UFC Fight Night 129. Saenz’s last four bouts have gone the distance and he’ll be looking for his first stoppage win in the UFC.

Vera (14-5-1) will also look to extend his winning streak to three-straight at UFC 235. The 26-year-old is coming off a second-round submission victory over Guido Canetti at UFC Fight Night 140 in November, which was his second-straight win via stoppage. “Chito” has gone 6-3 in his UFC career since he made his promotional debut in Nov. 2014.

UFC 235 takes place Mar. 2 at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, NV. Here’s an updated look at the card.

MAIN CARD | 10:00pm ET on pay-per-view

  • Champ Jon Jones vs. Anthony Smith – for light heavyweight title
  • Champ Tyron Woodley vs. Kamaru Usman – for welterweight title
  • Ben Askren vs. Robbie Lawler
  • Tecia Torres vs. Weili Zhang
  • Cody Garbrandt vs. Pedro Munhoz

Prelims | 8:00pm ET on ESPN

  • Zabit Magomedsharipov vs. Jeremy Stephens
  • Misha Cirkunov vs. Ovince Saint Preux
  • Alejandro Perez vs. Song Yadong
  • Mickey Gall vs. Diego Sanchez

Early Prelims | 6:15pm ET on UFC Fight Pass

  • Charles Byrd vs. Edmen Shahbazyan
  • Macy Chiasson vs. Gina Mazany
  • Frankie Saenz vs. Marlon Vera
  • Hannah Cifers vs. Polyana Viana

Which fight on the UFC 235 bill are you most excited for?

This article first appeared on BJPENN.COM on 2/4/2019.