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UFC Roundup: Petr Yan set for surgery; Pimblett wants Moicano next

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As the dust continues to settle within the exciting men’s bantamweight division following a pivotal UFC 299 earlier this month, one key player at 135 pounds will be sidelined indefinitely.

Former titleholder Petr Yan announced Monday he is set to undergo surgery this week to repair multiple injuries.

Yan is coming off a three-round unanimous decision win over Song Yadong in a 15-minute bout during which Yan had to battle back from losing the opening round. The fighter posted Monday that an MRI confirmed he is dealing with a ruptured ACL and meniscus tear, plus a groin injury.

Yan had lost three in a row (a five-round split decision to Aljamain Sterling, a three-round split decision to Sean O’Malley and a unanimous decision to Merab Dvalishvili), and four of five overall including his 2021 DQ against Sterling prior to defeating Yadong. Yan has never been finished during his MMA career.

The 31-year-old Russian is 17-5 as a pro, however, three were via split decision and one was a disqualification. The Dvalishvili loss is the one indisputable loss on his record. Current champion O’Malley just defended the title against Marlon Vera to avenge his only loss and he is expected to face Dvalishvili later this year.

Coleman returns to gym after hospital stay

Hall of Fame heavyweight Mark Coleman was recently discharged from hospital after saving his parents from a house fire and the former UFC champion made an appearance at a gym in Ohio. 

UFC welterweight Matt Brown, the owner of the Immortal Martial Arts Center at which Coleman helps coach, posted a short video of the 59-year-old popping in following his hospital stay.

Paddy wants ‘Money

Popular lightweight Paddy “The Baddy” Pimblett knows who he wants as his next opponent and if it comes to fruition fans can expect there to be plenty of trash talking. Pimblett said in a recent video blog he “won’t be fighting until like June or July” with his pregnant wife expecting twins but is eyeing exciting Brazilian Renato Moicano, adding: “That is who I want next. Renato Moicano. ‘Money’ Moicano, you owe me money, lad. I’m coming for you, you little sausage.”

Moicano was recently added to April’s UFC 300 card where he is scheduled to face Jalen Turner.  Moicano is coming off a win over Drew Dober in February.

Pimblett improved to 5-0 in the UFC with a unanimous decision win over Tony Ferguson at UFC 296 in December, rebounding from an uninspiring win over Jarden Gordon at UFC 282 the year prior.

Jones, Aspinall come face to face

This may end up being the closest fight fans get to seeing UFC heavyweight champion Jon Jones and interim champion Tom Aspinall square off for real…at least for a while.

Jones and Aspinall were both guests at the Arnold Sports Festival in Birmingham, England this past Saturday and Aspinall approached Jones to say hello and at one point politely asked if they were ever going to unify the two UFC heavyweight belts.

Jones responded by saying he hoped so. He also not so subtly removed Aspinall’s hand from his shoulder as the two shook hands. Jones is still recovering from a shoulder injury and is expected to return to the cage later this year, likely against former champion Stipe Miocic. Jones said his shoulder is “healing, slowly but surely” when Aspinall asked him how his recovery was going.

Aspinall won the interim title at UFC 295 in November when he knocked out Sergei Pavlovich. An interim belt was introduced after Jones sustained his injury in the middle of last year. Jones became heavyweight champion when he submitted Cyril Gane one year ago at UFC 285 after Francis Ngannou had vacated the title when he left the organization.

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