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LI's Al Iaquinta agrees to fight with Donald 'Cowboy' Cerrone at UFC Ottawa, source confirms

Al Iaquinta prepares to enter the octagon to

Al Iaquinta prepares to enter the octagon to fight Khabib Nurmagomedov for the lightweight title in the main event at UFC 223 at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn on April 7, 2018. Photo Credit: Mario Gonzalez

Al Iaquinta has a fight booked with one of the UFC’s top fan-favorites, but not the notorious opponent he’d been lobbying for.

Wantagh’s Iaquinta has verbally agreed to face Donald “Cowboy” Cerrone at UFC Fight Night in Ottawa on May 4, a source confirmed. ESPN first reported the booking, saying it would be the main event.

Both Iaquinta and Cerrone had spent the previous months calling for a fight against former UFC lightweight champion Conor McGregor but now will meet each other with a spot near the top of the lightweight rankings on the line.

Iaquinta won his last bout in a five-round unanimous decision over Kevin Lee last December. Ranked No. 4 in the division, he went five rounds with champion Khabib Nurmagomedov in April 2018, losing by decision on just one day’s notice. That defeat is Iaquinta’s only loss since 2014, a stretch of seven fights.

Cerrone (35-11, 1 NC) last competed on Jan. 19 in Brooklyn, beating prospect Alexander Hernandez in dominant fashion in his return to thelightweight division. The fan-favorite sits at No. 9 in the official lightweight rankings. After that bout, Cerrone said he wanted a top-five fighter. In Iaquinta, he gets just that.

With Mark La Monica

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