Darren Till’s anticipated move to middleweight has become a reality, as the Liverpool native will square off against Kelvin Gastelum at UFC 244.
The Las Vegas-based promotion confirmed the 185-pound pairing on Monday following an initial report from ESPN. UFC 244 takes place at Madison Square Garden in New York on Nov. 2 and includes a pivotal light heavyweight clash between Corey Anderson and Johnny Walker as well as heavyweight showdown pitting Derrick Lewis against Blagoy Ivanov.
A former title challenger at 170 pounds, Till enters the matchup with Gastelum on a two-bout skid. “The Gorilla” was submitted by then champion Tyron Woodley in the second round at UFC 228 before suffering a second-round KO defeat at the hands of Jorge Masvidal in his most recent outing at UFC London on March 16. Prior to that skid, Till took a five-round verdict over Stephen Thompson but tipped the scales at 174.5 pounds during weigh-ins.
Gastelum is coming off a thrilling decision loss to Israel Adesanya in an interim middleweight title bout at UFC 236 this past April. “The Ultimate Fighter 17” winner has experienced great success since moving up a division, posting victories against the likes of Ronaldo Souza, Michael Bisping, Tim Kennedy and Johny Hendricks.