Here is everything you need to know about UFC 222, which takes place March 3 at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas.
Originally UFC 222 was scheduled to feature a featherweight title fight between champion Max Holloway and challenger Frankie Edgar. UFC 222 was in danger of being canceled when Holloway was forced to pull out with an injury. The pair were originally slated to fight at UFC 218 in Detroit, but an eye injury forced Edgar out and Holloway defended his belt against Jose Aldo in an immediate rematch.
Enter Cristiane ‘Cyborg’ Justino to save the day. Cyborg successfully defended her strap against Holly Holm at UFC 219 on the end of December card and is making the quick turnaround on three weeks notice to save the card. Her challenger is former Invicta FC bantamweight champion Yana Kunitskaya, who is making her UFC debut on short notice.
Edgar remains on the card as well, fighting the rising Brian Ortega in a default No. 1 contender bout for the featherweight strap. Edgar cited his limited remaining time in his career as the reason for fighting instead of waiting to fight Holloway at a later date.
The UFC also explored a banatamweight title fight between champion T.J. Dillashaw and Cody Garbrandt, a rematch of their UFC 217 title fight. Dillashaw declined citing the birth of his child and being out of a regular training regiment, he also felt Garbrandt didn’t deserve an immediate rematch after a second-round TKO and pointed to his long road back to a title fight after a narrow decision loss to Dominick Cruz.
Dillashaw has also been pursuing a flyweight title fight with champion Demetrious Johnson.
Here is how the rest of the cards lineup stands:
MAIN CARD | PAY-PER-VIEW | 10PM/7PM ETPT
Women’s Featherweight: Cris Cyborg (c) vs. Yana Kunitskaya
Featherweight: Frankie Edgar vs. Brian Ortega
Bantamweight: Sean O’Malley vs. Andre Soukhamthath
Heavyweight: Stefan Struve vs. Andrei Arlovski
Women’s Bantamweight: Cat Zingano vs. Ketlen Vieira
Preliminary Card | Fox Sports 1 | 8PM/5PM ETPT
Women’s Strawweight: Ashley Yoder vs. Mackenzie Dern
Lightweight: Beneil Dariush vs. Alexander Hernandez
Bantamweight: John Dodson vs. Pedro Munhoz
Middleweight: C. B. Dollaway vs. Hector Lombard
Preliminary Card | UFC Fight Pass | 6:30PM/3:30PM ETP
Welterweight: Mike Pyle vs. Zak Ottow
Bantamweight: Bryan Caraway vs. Cody Stamann
Light Heavyweight: Jordan Johnson vs. Adam Milstead