A heavyweight clash between Blaydes and Volkov will headline a UFC Fight Night event June 20 at a to-be-determined location, although the UFC Apex in Las Vegas is expected to host. The fight was mentioned during the UFC on ESPN 9 broadcast this past Saturday and announced Wednesday on social media.
Blaydes and Volkov originally were expected to headline UFC Saskatoon on the same date, but the card was canceled because of the global coronavirus pandemic.
Blaydes (13-2 MMA, 8-2 UFC) is riding a three-fight winning streak entering the bout. After losing to Francis Ngannou in November 2018, Blaydes stormed back to defeat Justin Willis, Shamil Aburakhimov and former heavyweight champion Junior Dos Santos.
Following his TKO win over Dos Santos in January, Blaydes voiced his hope for a title fight. However, Blaydes said he wouldn’t be willing to sit around and wait for other championship fights to happen before him.
As for Volkov (31-7 MMA, 5-1), the Russian big man punched his ticket back into the win column last November. On home soil, Volkov picked apart former NFL star Greg Hardy en route to a unanimous decision victory.
The current June 20 lineup includes:
Curtis Blaydes vs. Alexander Volkov
Raquel Pennington vs. Marion Reneau
Roxanne Modafferi vs. Lauren Murphy
Shane Burgos vs. Josh Emmett
Lyman Good vs. Belal Muhammad
Cortney Casey vs. Gillian Robertson
Tecia Torres vs. Brianna Van Buren
Frank Camacho vs. Matt Frevola
Marc-Andre Barriault vs. Oskar Piechota