The UFC will crown a new women’s bantamweight champion in January. Earlier tonight, AG Fight was the first to report that Mayra Bueno Silva (10-2-1, 1 NC) will be taking on Raquel Pennington (15-8) in January at UFC 297.
The event goes down on January 20th from Toronto. At this point, it’s not clear whether or not the vacant title fight will headline the card. Originally, the promotion wanted Alexander Volkanovski to defend his featherweight title against Ilia Topuria in the main event. However, it’s not clear whether or not Volkanovski will be ready by then.
Bueno Silva gets her UFC title shot that seemed to be up in the air after her last fight. She dominated and then submitted Holly Holm, however, the fight was overturned to a No Contest because she was taking her ADHD medication. That left her in a bit of limbo.
Julianna Pena was supposed to be one half of the title fight, but The Venezuelan Vixen told Ariel Helwani this evening that she’s injured and can’t take the fight. Because of that, Bueno Silva and her three-fight UFC winning streak gets the title shot she’s been waiting for.
Raquel Pennington will be challenging for a UFC title for the second time. Back in 2018, Pennington got a shot at the title on the heels of a four-fight winning streak. She took on Amanda Nunes and was absolutely brutalized in that title fight and was stopped in the fifth round. Things got rocky for “Rocky” starting with that fight.
She went through a 1-3 stretch starting with that fight. However, in 2020, she picked up a win over Marion Reneau and that’s where things started to turn around. Starting with that fight, she’s won five straight including wins over Ketlen Vieira and Aspen Ladd. That winning streak has carried her back to the top of the division and earned her a shot at the vacant bantamweight championship.