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Report: Paige VanZant vs. Jessica Eye targeted for UFC 216

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Paige VanZant is reportedly moving up to flyweight to fight Jessica Eye at UFC 216.

Following a one-sided and quick first-round loss in her last fight, it looks like top-15 ranked strawweight Paige VanZant is ready to move up to flyweight.

A report from FloCombat’s Damon Martin says that VanZant and Jessica Eye have verbally agreed to fight each other at UFC 216 in Las Vegas. UFC officials haven’t confirmed the matchup themselves. This would be a return to flyweight for Eye, who’d previously competed in the division before she signed with the UFC, while it’d be the first time the 23-year-old VanZant has ever fought at 125 lbs.

VanZant (7-3) was utterly dominated and choked unconscious by Michelle Waterson in last December’s UFC on FOX 22 main event in Sacramento. She’d also lost by rear-naked choke to Rose Namajunas in a UFC Fight Night headliner in December 2015. Her most recent win was last August against Bec Rawlings, who was knocked out by a jumping switch kick and punches.

Eye (11-6, 1 NC) has lost four straight and has just one official win on her record in her last seven fights. She dropped a split decision to Bethe Correia at UFC 203 last September, but the UFC has kept her on the roster despite the prolonged stretch of defeats. Eye was supposed to face Aspen Ladd at bantamweight last month at the TUF 25 Finale, only for Ladd to withdraw from the bout on fight day after she fell ill and was hospitalized. The 31-year-old had expressed interest in returning to flyweight, but without competing on season 26 of The Ultimate Fighter.

UFC 216 takes place at the T-Mobile Arena on Saturday, October 7th. A main event has not yet been announced.

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