A significant change is coming to an upcoming Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) event scheduled to take place at the Apex facility in Las Vegas. The previously slated match between undefeated Russian prospect Azamat Murzakanov and Khalil Rountree is now undergoing a notable alteration due to unforeseen circumstances. It was announced by UFC CEO Dana White, two weeks prior to fight night, that Murzakanov was forced to pull out of the light heavyweight clash due to pneumonia. In place of the Russian heavyweight, Anthony Smith will now enter the ring on December 9th for UFC Fight Night 233.
Anthony Smith, boasting a professional record of 37 wins and 18 losses, is entering the UFC event fresh off a split-decision victory in a high-stakes rematch against Ryan Spann. This was a significant comeback for Smith who had previously suffered consecutive losses against top contenders; Magomed Ankalaev and Johnny Walker. Adding to his MMA credit, Smith also dispatched Ryan Spann with a first-round submission victory in September of 2021, a testament to his resilience and fighting prowess.
On the other side of the Octagon, Khalil Rountree enters the contest on a streak of his own. Going into the awaited matchup, Rountree is riding a four-fight win streak that includes notable technical knockout victories against the likes of Modestas Bukauskas, Karl Roberson, and Chris Daukaus. The UFC Fight Night 233 event will also feature another thrilling encounter as its main event – a bantamweight clash between rising contenders; Yadong Song who has an impressive record of 20-7, and Chris Gutierrez with a record of 20-5. The anticipation builds as both the co-main and main event promise to be spectacular showdowns worthy of MMA enthusiasts around the world.