Former UFC champ Robbie Lawler (28-14 MMA, 13-8 UFC) and surging contender Santiago Ponzinibbio (27-3 MMA, 9-2 UFC) are targeted to clash at UFC 245.
The people requested anonymity because the fight has not been officially announced.
UFC 245 takes place Dec. 14 at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas. The main card airs on pay-per-view following prelims expected on ESPN and ESPN+/UFC Fight Fight Pass.
Lawler, No. 15 in the latest welterweight rankings, comes into the event on the first three-fight losing skid of his career. The most recent fight in that stretch came in a unanimous decision against Colby Covington at UFC on ESPN 5 in August.
After making his run to the top of the division, Lawler, 37, has won just once since dropping the 170-pound belt more than three years ago, beating Donald Cerrone at UFC 214 in July 2017.
No. 12-ranked Ponzinibbio, 32, will bring a seven-fight winning streak into the matchup with Lawler. It will have been 13 months since his last fight by the time he competes, though, because he’s been out of action since a fourth-round knockout of Neil Magny in his home country of Argentina in November.
With the addition, the latest UFC 245 card includes:
- Amanda Nunes vs. Germaine de Randamie – for women’s bantamweight title
- Jessica Eye vs. Viviane Araujo
- Matt Brown vs. Ben Saunders
- Robbie Lawler vs. Santiago Ponzinibio