Shavkat Rakhmonov vs. Kelvin Gastelum Set for Sept. 16
By Shawn Stewart
UFC president Dana White announced on Wednesday evening that Shavkat Rakhmonov vs Kelvin Gastelum, is set in the co-main event of a UFC Fight Night card on Sept. 16. The UFC Fight Night event is being held in honor of Mexican Independence Day and is headlined by a flyweight championship rematch between Alexa Grasso and Valentina Shevchenko. The card takes place at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas and will air on ESPN+.
Undefeated in 17 professional appearances, Rakhmonov is an upcoming star in the UFC’s welterweight division. The 28-year-old Kazakhstan native is coming off a third-round submission of Geoff Neal in his last outing at UFC 285 this past March. The former M-1 Global title holder also owns wins over Neil Magny, Carlston Harris, Michel Prazeres and Alex Oliveira in the Octagon.
Gastelum has endured his share of struggles in recent years, going 2-5 in UFC competition since 2019. Most recently, “The Ultimate Fighter 17” winner outpointed Chris Curtis in a 185-pound clash at UFC 287 on April 8. Gastelum hasn’t attempted to compete at welterweight since 2016, when he defeated ex-champ Johny Hendricks at UFC 200. While he made weight for that bout, he has previously struggled on the scales when attempting to make 170 pounds.