Photo: Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC / Contributor and Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC / Contributor (Getty Images)
The Ultimate Fighting Championship has put another significant obstacle in front of Darren Till, as the cocksure Brit once again seeks to affirm his place among the welterweight elite.
Till will take on American Top Team mainstay Jorge Masvidal in the UFC Fight Night 147 main event on Saturday at the O2 Arena in London, as the promotion touches down in Europe for the second time in less than a month. Meanwhile, former British Association of Mixed Martial Arts champion Leon Edwards puts his six-fight winning streak on the line against Gunnar Nelson in the three-round co-headliner at 170 pounds.
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Spawned by the Astra Fight Team and Team Kaobon, Till finds himself on the rebound following a submission loss to Tyron Woodley in a failed bid to capture the welterweight crown at UFC 228 in September. The setback knocked “The Gorilla” from the ranks of the unbeaten—he was 17-0-1 at the time—and exposed some glaring holes in his game. Till, 26, has delivered 12 of his 17 career victories by knockout, technical knockout, or submission and owns notable wins over Donald Cerrone, Stephen Thompson, and Bojan Velickovic.
Masvidal has not fought in more than a year and enters the cage on a two-fight losing streak. The 34-year-old Miami native last competed at UFC 217 in November 2017, when he wound up on the wrong side of a three-round unanimous decision against Thompson. A well-traveled veteran with 45 professional bouts under his belt, Masvidal made his MMA debut as a teenager in 2003.
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UFC Fight Night “Till vs. Masvidal” — which streams live to ESPN+ at 1 p.m. ET/10 a.m. PT — also features a light heavyweight clash pairing Dominick Reyes with Volkan Oezdemir, a bantamweight tilt pitting Nathaniel Wood against Jose Alberto Quinonez, a welterweight affair matching Danny Roberts with Claudio Henrique da Silva and a middleweight scrap slotting Jack Marshman opposite John Phillips.
The Titan Fighting Championship organization holds sway over the regional mixed martial arts scene with Titan 53 on Friday at Xtreme Action Park in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Juan Puerta will defend his flyweight title against Gustavo Eddy Balart in a main event rematch. Puerta knocked out Balart, a quarterfinalist in Greco-Roman wrestling at the 2012 Summer Olympics, with a flying knee at Titan 48 in February. Titan 53 “Puerta vs. Balart 2” will stream live to UFC Fight Pass at 8 p.m. ET/5 p.m. PT.