UFC president Dana White on Thursday confirmed that top lightweights Khabib Nurmagomedov and Tony Ferguson will square off in the Octagon.
“It’s happening,” UFC President Dana White told the L.A. Times on Thursday. “We haven’t received bout agreements from both guys, but they’ve both verbally agreed.”
The fight will take place at UFC 209 on March 4 in Las Vegas. The event will be headlined by the welterweight title rematch between champion Tyron Woodley and challenger Stephen “Wonderboy” Thompson.
Nurmagomedov and Ferguson have both teased the bout recently on social media, and MMAWeekly.com sources on Tuesday indicated that it had been all but signed off. Pen hasn’t been put to paper yet, but the fight appears to be a lock.
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With undefeated Nurmagomedov ranked No. 1 in the UFC light division and Ferguson sitting at No. 2, the winner is likely to challenge champion Conor McGregor when he returns to the Octagon. When that will happen remains unclear, as McGregor is currently taking time off while he and his girlfriend welcome their first child into the world.
(UPDATED 10:30 p.m. PT – Following publication, White later confirmed that the Nurmagomedov vs. Ferguson bout would be for the interim UFC lightweight championship.)