The lightweight and middleweight interim belts are on the line when UFC 236 goes down in Atlanta
By Thomas Gerbasi
• Feb. 23, 2019
A championship doubleheader will headline the UFC’s return to Atlanta on April 13, as UFC 236 will see UFC featherweight champion Max Holloway moving to 155 pounds for a rematch with Dustin Poirier for the interim lightweight title, and Israel Adesanya battling it out with Kelvin Gastelum for the interim middleweight belt.
Tickets for UFC 236, which airs live on pay-per-view from State Farm Arena, go on sale on March 8.
In 2012, Louisiana’s Poirier spoiled the UFC debut of Holloway, submitting the Hawaiian at UFC 143. Since then, the two stars have taken vastly different paths to the top. Poirier battled it out at 145 pounds for several years before moving back to lightweight in 2015, and he’s scored eight wins in his return, including consecutive finishes of Anthony Pettis, Justin Gaethje and Eddie Alvarez. Following his loss to Poirier, Holloway went 16-2, a stretch that includes his current 13-fight winning streak. In 2017, “Blessed” scored a pair of stoppage wins over Jose Aldo, the first of which earning him the undisputed featherweight title, and in his most recent bout in December, he halted Brian Ortega in four rounds.
Fresh from a win over Brazilian icon Anderson Silva earlier this month, New Zealand’s Adesanya has scored five UFC wins since his debut in 2018, lifting his perfect record to 16-0. On the same card as Adesanya-Silva, Gastelum saw his shot at the middleweight crown get delayed when champion Robert Whittaker was forced to withdraw due to injury, but in April, the former Ultimate Fighter winner will get his shot at gold when he faces “The Last Stylebender.”
Also made official for UFC 236 were the following bouts:
Ovince Saint Preux vs Nikita Krylov
Eryk Anders vs. Khalil Rountree Jr.
Montel Jackson vs. Andre Soukhamthath
Wilson Reis vs. Alexandre Pantoja
Boston Salmon vs. Khalid Taha
Stay tuned to UFC.com for more fight card announcements.