UFC Vegas 87 adds Umar Nurmagomedov – Bekzat Almakhan

MMA: UFC 272 - Kelleher vs Nurmagomedov
Stephen R. Sylvanie-USA TODAY Sports

One of the most dangerous prospects in the UFC‘s bantamweight division will be making his official return in just a few weeks. Umar Nurmagomedov (16-0) will be making the walk at UFC Vegas 87 and he will be taking on promotional newcomer Bekzat Almakhan (17-1). Underground Management announced that matchup this morning.

The APEX event on March 2nd is starting to take shape with this fight being booked and the main event being announced today as well featuring heavyweights Jairzinho Rozenstruik and Shamil Gaziev. Originally, this was supposed to be an event in Saudi Arabia, but that event is being moved to June and the APEX took this card.

Despite the card no longer being in Saudi Arabia, the UFC has still stacked the deck with fighters from that area of the world. Another fighter along those lines is newcomer Bekzat Almakhan hailing from Kazakhstan. The 26-year-old has a very impressive professional record although we don’t know a ton about him.

Almakhan has only one professional loss and that came back in 2020. Since losing that fight by submission, he’s won a very impressive nine fights in a row with seven finishes. While he’s coming in hot, this is a very tall ask for his UFC debut.

UFC Vegas 87

Umar Nurmagomedov has had a tough time getting fights. With the name of Nurmagomedov, you already know that there is a lot of hype behind him. The cousin of UFC great and former lightweight champion Khabib Nurmagomedov, Umar is a perfect 4-0 inside the octagon.

He’s currently ranked 13th in the bantamweight division but it’s been over a year since we’ve seen him inside the octagon. The last time we saw him was against Raoni Barcelos and he scored a first round knockout really showing off how good his striking is.

The UFC had booked him in a main event against Cory Sandhagen for March, but he had to pull out of that fight. Had he fought Sandhagen and won, he would be right in the title picture at 135. Since then, he’s really struggled finding an opponent and he’s just wanted to fight. Well, he’s got an opponent, but it’s one he’s not going to gain much from defeating if he gets the win.