Two Fights Announced For UFC Busan In December
UFC is set to return to South Korea in December with UFC Busan, and the promotion has announced the first two fights for the event.
The announced fights will see top-ten ranked fighters from flyweight and light heavyweight divisions duke it out.
At flyweight, No. 4 ranked Alexandre “The Cannibal” Patonja
(21-3, fighting out of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil) faces No. 10 ranked Matt “Danger” Schnell (13-4, fighting out of Amory, Miss., USA). The Ultimate Fighter top pick Patonja has shot up the rankings in short order, and intends to bounce back from a decision loss in a battle with Deiveson Figueiredo that won Fight of the Night honours in July. Schnell is a tough submission specialist who has mounted a four-fight win streak capped off by a Performance of the Night Award at August’s UFC on ESPN 5.
In the light heavyweight division, No. 7 ranked Volkan Oezdemir
(16-4, fighting out of Fribourg, Switzerland) takes on No. 10 ranked Aleksander Rakic (12-1, fighting out of Vienna, Austria). Former contender Oezdemir is a knockout artist looking to build himself back into contention after a Performance of the Night win over Ilir Latifi at UFC Uruguay in August. Young prospect Rakic is on a four-fight win streak that includes a lightning head kick KO of Jimi Manuwa for a Performance of the Night bonus at UFC on ESPN+ 11 in July.
Kevin Chang, UFC’s Senior Vice President of Asia Pacific said, “We’ve been eyeing a return to South Korea since our sold out event in Seoul, and we are thrilled to kick off UFC Fight Night® Busan by announcing two ranking fights. Alexandre Patonja versus Matt Schnell and Volkan Oezdemir versus Aleksander Rakic feature four fighters in the top ten of their stacked divisions. Korea has a rising talent pool of fighters as well as established stars, and our fans can expect some big announcements in coming weeks.”
Former title challenger Volkan Oezdemir (16-4 MMA, 4-3 UFC) is coming off a win over Latifi after suffering three straight losses, and would be eyeing a big win over the number ten ranked Rakic.