Calgary’s Hakeem Dawodu desperately wanted to fight in nearby Edmonton in the UFC’s lone Canadian pay-per-view event of 2019 and his wishes have been answered.
The featherweight is a late addition to UFC 240 on July 27 after many avenues were exhausted to get him an opponent. He will face Japanese newcomer Yoshinori Horie.
“I’m on the card. I was supposed to be fighting some dude from Kazakhstan, but we went through five different opponents trying to get a fight and nobody on the roster wanted to fight me,” said Dawodu. “So they signed some guy from Japan, he’s 8-1 and he’s lucky number six. I’m just happy to be fighting near my city.”
Dawodu is 2-1 since joining the UFC as an undefeated prospect in early 2018 and is considered one of the best Canadian fighters in the promotion.
“Now that I’m back on the card, a lot of people have been asking me and I think it’s going to have a large turnout – lots of friends, lots of family and lots of fans from Calgary,” said Dawodu on fighting close to home.
Horie is on a two-fight win streak, both of which came by first-round knockout.
This will be Horie’s first fight outside of Japan, where all of his previous bouts took place in the Pancrase promotion.
Both of Dawodu’s UFC wins have come on Canadian soil following his debut loss, which took place in London, England.