TODAY'S PAPER
27° Good Morning
27° Good Morning
SportsMixed Martial Arts

UFC 249 in Brooklyn adds Ottman Azaitar vs. Khama Worthy

Ottman Azaitar celebrates his victory over Teemu Packalen

Ottman Azaitar celebrates his victory over Teemu Packalen in their lightweight bout during UFC 242 at The Arena on Saturday, Sept. 7, 2019, in Abu Dhabi. Credit: Getty Images/Francois Nel

The UFC 249 main event figures to be a long, grueling battle between lightweight champion Khabib Nurmagomedov and talented contender Tony Ferguson.

The latest lighweight fight announced for the card could be over a lot quicker.

A pair of knockout artists will be on display as Ottman Azaitar will face Khama Worthy at 155 pounds on April 18 at Barclays Center, the UFC announced Wednesday.

Both fighters will make their second appearance with the promotion at UFC 249, each coming off an early knockout in their UFC debuts.

Azaitar (12-0) has won six of his last seven fights by knockout or TKO, including a spectacular one-punch KO of Teemu Packalen just 3:33 into his first UFC bout. The 29-year-old from Morocco and Germany earned a performance of the night bonus for that knockout and is a budding star in the African country, lobbying the UFC to bring an event to the nation following his debut last September at UFC 242.

Worthy (15-6) is back for his second UFC bout after scoring a big upset in his short-notice debut against up-and-comer Devonte Smith at UFC 241 last August. Stepping to the cage against Smith as the biggest underdog on the main card, Worthy had just a week to prepare and was less than a month removed from his previous outing. Still, the 33-year-old handed Smith the first loss of his career with an impressive uppercut that led to a finish at 4:15 of the first round. The Pittsburgh native is on a six-fight win streak, three of those coming via knockout or TKO.

This is the fifth fight to be announced for the April event in Brooklyn. In addition to the lightweight title fight between Nurmagomedov and Ferguson, former women’s strawweight champion Rose Namajunas will take on Jessica Andrade and New York native Uriah Hall faces longtime contender Ronaldo “Jacare” Souza. LI’s Gian Villante also is expected to appear, making his heavyweight debut against Ben Rothwell.

New York Sports