Casey Kenney targets Manny Bermudez with a left hand

An exciting bantamweight showdown is heading to New Mexico in February. 

Multiple sources have confirmed with The Body Lock that Casey Kenney will face Merab Dvalishvili at UFC on ESPN+ 25. The event takes place Feb. 15 at the Santa Ana Star Center in Rio Rancho, N.M. and will be headlined by a light heavyweight rematch between Corey Anderson and Jan Blachowicz.

Kenney has started off his UFC career as well as anyone could have hoped for. In his short notice Octagon debut, the 28-year-old Kenney defeated former title challenger Ray Borg via unanimous decision at March’s UFC on ESPN 2 event. A little less than five months later, Kenney took on Manny Bermudez at UFC 241 and, despite his opponent not being able to make the bantamweight limit on the scales, was able to hand Bermudez the first loss of his pro career. The #14 ranked 135-pound fighter will look to make it seven straight wins in the UFC’s debut in Rio Rancho.

Dvalishvili bounced back from an 0-2 start in the UFC with back-to-back victories. After suffering losses to Frankie Saenz and Ricky Simon, the 28-year-old Dvalishvili picked up unanimous decision wins over Terrion Ware and, most recently, Brad Katona at UFC on ESPN+ 9 in September. Dvalishvili has shared the cage with some of the toughest bantamweight contenders in the world, including Ricky Bandejas, Tony Gravely, and Raufeon Stots as he looks to make it three straight wins in the Octagon. 

Here is how the UFC Rio Rancho card currently looks with the addition of the bantamweight bout between Casey Kenney and Merab Dvalishvili: 

UFC on ESPN+ 25 fight card

  • Corey Anderson vs. Jan Blachowicz
  • Diego Sanchez vs. Michel Pereira
  • Montana De La Rosa vs. Mara Romero Borella
  • Ray Borg vs. Rogerio Bontorin
  • Devin Clark vs. Gadzhimurad Antigulov
  • Casey Kenney vs. Merab Dvalishvili
  • Macy Chiasson vs. Nicco Montano
  • Mark De La Rosa vs. Raulian Paiva

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