Khabib vs. Edson Barboza Set For UFC 219

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UFC 219 is without a headliner to date but will feature the return of Dominick Cruz as he faces Jimmie Rivera as well as the comeback fight of former interim-welterweight champion Carlos Condit, who takes on Neil Magny.

Khabib Nurmagomedov is at long last returning to the UFC octagon, in a fight with title implications. The Russian lightweight was scheduled to face Tony Ferguson for the UFC's interim title in March, but was forced to pull out the day before, after he was hospitalized during his weight cut.

With "The Notorious" Conor McGregor now serving as the 155-pound lightweight champion of the UFC, the aforementioned Ferguson managed to capture the interim strap in the absence of the heralded Irishman.

The bout should further clarity for a crowded and talented division that has seen champion Conor McGregor idle since his winning the title last November at UFC 205 against Eddie Alvarez.

Flying somewhat under the radar through all of this has been Brazil's Edson Barboza. In that span he has picked up wins over former UFC lightweight champ Anthony Pettis, and former Strikeforce lightweight champ Gilbert Melendez.

At 24-0 and 29 years old, Nurmagomedov is unquestionably one of the hottest 155-pound fighters on earth.

So, when you consider a lot of signs are pointing to Ferguson fighting Conor McGregor next, this bout make a lot of sense.

UFC 219 takes place on Saturday, December 30 from the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada with no main event announced at this time. The New Year's Eve weekend card - typically one of UFC's biggest of the calendar year - remains without a main event yet.

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