A day after the announcement of Conor McGregor vs. Donald Cerrone, UFC 246 gained another fight.
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Undefeated Russian flyweight Askar Askarov will make his second Octagon appearance on Jan. 18, 2020 when he faces Tim Elliott. Askarov announced the news on his Instagram page.
“On January 18th there will be sparks,” Askarov wrote, according to translation.
Askarov is coming off of his promotional debut which didn’t quite go as expected.
Facing Brandon Moreno in Mexico City for Moreno’s return to the Octagon, the two flyweights put on a back-and-forth contest which ultimately ended in a split draw.
The September bout was the first of Askarov’s career that made it to the scorecards. In his previous 10 bouts — seven of which took place for Absolute Championship Berkut (now Absolute Championship Akhmat) — Askarov finished seven opponents by submission and three by TKO.
Despite being winless in the UFC, Askarov is the 12th-ranked fighter in the UFC flyweight rankings.
Elliott is currently sitting at No. 8 in those rankings.
This past October saw Elliott return to the cage for the first time since December 30, 2017. Facing No. 3 Deiveson Figueiredo, Elliott found himself stuck in a guillotine choke in the first round and was forced to tap, spoiling his comeback at UFC Tampa.
Elliott is a former challenger for the UFC flyweight title. He earned the opportunity through The Ultimate Fighter Season 24, where he was selected after winning the inaugural Titan FC flyweight belt and defending it twice.
Elliott went 4-0 on the show, defeating Charlie Alaniz, Matt Schnell, Eric Shelton, and Hiromasa Ogikubo to earn his title shot against then-champion Demetrious Johnson. Elliott would lose via unanimous decision and hasn’t been able to win consecutive bouts since then.
UFC 246’s card currently features the following fights in no particular order:
- Conor McGregor vs. Donald Cerrone (170)
- Andre Fili vs. Sodiq Yusuff (145)
- Roxanne Modafferi vs. Maycee Barber (125)
- Nasrat Haqparast vs. Drew Dober (155)
- Grant Dawson vs. Chas Skelly (145)
- Aleksei Oleinik vs. Maurice Greene (265)
- Anthony Pettis vs. Carlos Diego Ferreira (155)
- Tim Elliott vs. Askar Askarov (125)
Shane Connelly is a journalism student at Penn State with a passion for sharing the stories of MMA fighters.