UFC 279 had no shortage of anticipation with Nate Diaz heading into his last fight against an up-and-coming star in Khamzat Chimaev. But, things went astray when the Russian-Swede missed the weight limit by seven pounds on Friday. That's resulted in Dana White having to shuffle the card for Saturday night. Now, Diaz will fight Tony Ferguson in the main event, while Chimaev is set to face Kevin Holland in the co-main event. Via SportsCenter:
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) September 9, 2022
This is absolutely wild but should still be a very entertaining card. The UFC spent the entire morning trying to figure out how to make everything all work and they have. Ferguson, a fan favorite, was supposed to fight Li Jingliang in a three-round bout. Now, he'll go the full five rounds with Diaz, who is officially done after UFC 279 because his contract is up.
Holland and Chimaev will surely be an entertaining bout as well. Holland was initially going to face Daniel Rodriguez in a 180 lb fight. Since Chimaev weighed in at 178.5, it works out.
Diaz more than anyone will be delighted. He never wanted to fight Chimaev at UFC 279 and made that very clear, insinuating that White was basically forcing him into it. The Russian was a heavy, heavy favorite to come out victorious. Chimaev and Holland actually got in a scuffle backstage on Thursday before the press conference, therefore it's clear the two have bad blood. Now they get to hash out their differences in the Octagon.
Saturday night can't come soon enough and there's likely to be lots of fireworks.