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Petr Yan vs Song Yadong: A Battle of Bantamweights in China



The UFC is eyeing a return to China for the first time in two years. The promotion is reportedly targeting Shanghai for a UFC Fight Night on December 9, though nothing is official yet. A potential main event has also been revealed for the card.


Instead of the anticipated strawweight title fight between Zhang Weili and Yan Xiaonan, which has been delayed due to the champion's unavailability, another Chinese star will get a huge opportunity in front of his home crowd.


Yan (16-5) has been on a rough patch since he lost his bantamweight belt by disqualification for an illegal knee against Aljamain Sterling in 2020. He bounced back with an interim title win over Cory Sandhagen, but then dropped three consecutive bouts.


In 2022, he lost a close decision to Sterling in their rematch and a controversial one to current champion Sean O'Malley. His most recent outing was a clear defeat by Georgia's Merab Dvalishvili in the UFC Las Vegas main event in March.


Song (20-7-1, 1 NC) is looking to capitalize on Yan's slump in the UFC's final event of the year. The Chinese fighter is ranked #7 in the bantamweight division, two spots below Yan, and is coming off an impressive knockout win over Ricky Simón in the fifth round of their Apex main event in April. Song will try to climb the ladder and challenge for the title by beating Yan.


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