The UFC 223 fight card slated for April 7 in Brooklyn, N.Y., was only just announced, but it is already flourishing.
The latest UFC 223 addition is an exciting lightweight match-up between longtime Octagon favorite Joe Lauzon and relative newcomer Chris Gruetzemacher. MMAWeekly.com sources close to the bout confirmed the news, which was originally reported by Newsday.
It may sound odd to tout the appeal of a fight that pits two competitors who are each coming off of back-to-back losses, but that’s where Lauzon vs. Gruetzemacher lands.
Lauzon (27-14) has never strung together more than three victories in his nearly 12-year UFC tenure, but that hasn’t stopped him from becoming a fan favorite. He brought excitement to the cage from his first footsteps into the Octagon, knocking out former UFC lightweight champion Jens Pulver less than a minute into his debut fight under the UFC banner.
Lauzon has never slowed down, always going for broke in his fights, often to his own detriment. Despite never being able to string together a run at the title, Lauzon can boast a UFC record-tying 15 post-fight bonus awards to his credit in his 25 trips to the Octagon; that’s an impressive ratio.
Gruetzenmacher (13-3) doesn’t have the storied history that Lauzon does in the Octagon, but he put together an impressive 13-1 run before losing his last two fights.
Like Lauzon, Gruetzenmacher has a penchant to throw caution to the wind. Of his 16 professional bouts, only four have gone the distance. Gruetzenmacher is also a fighter that tends to live by the “kill or be killed” creed when it comes to his fights.
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The pairing joins an already burgeoning UFC 223 fight card that is headlined by two title fights. Interim UFC lightweight champion Tony Ferguson faces undefeated Khabib Nurmagomedov in the UFC 223 headliner in Brooklyn, while Rose Namajunas puts her newly won strawweight title on the line for the first time in the co-main event in an immediate rematch with the woman she took it from, Joanna Jedrzejczyk.
Several other UFC 223 bouts have also been announced.