Islam Makhachev vs. Thiago Moises Confirmed as New UFC on ESPN 26 Headliner

By Tristen Critchfield Jun 24, 2021


A lightweight clash between Islam Makhachev and Thiago Moises will serve as the new main event for UFC on ESPN 26.

The matchup is a replacement for a previously scheduled featherweight showdown pitting Max Holloway against Yair Rodriguez, which was postponed to an as yet to be announced date after Holloway suffered an injury. MMAjunkie.com was first to confirm Makhachev vs. Moises as the new five-round headliner.

UFC on ESPN 26 takes place at the UFC Apex in Las Vegas on July 17 and also includes Miesha Tate’s return from retirement, as she squares off against Marion Reneau at bantamweight.

A teammate of former lightweight champion Khabib Nurmagomedov, Makhachev is currently on a seven-bout winning streak within the Las Vegas-based promotion. Most recently, the 29-year-old Dagestani submitted Drew Dober with an arm triangle in the third round of their UFC 259 clash on March 6.

Moises, meanwhile, is on a three-bout winning streak in the Octagon. After submitting Michael Johnson, the 26-year-old American Top Team representative has earned consecutive decision triumphs over Bobby Green and Alexander Hernandez.

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