Yoel Romero and Robert Whittaker will tangle for an interim middleweight title in July.
After all the confusion about the UFC’s middleweight division over the last few weeks, we officially have some clarity now – and at least for the time being, the plan doesn’t involve current champion Michael Bisping or Georges St-Pierre. When talking to ESPN’s Brett Okamoto, UFC president Dana White confirmed that number one contender Yoel Romero will meet Robert Whittaker for an interim 185-pound title, and it’ll go down at UFC 213:
BREAKING: @danawhite tells me interim middleweight title fight between @YoelRomeroMMA and @RJWhittaker1990 will co-headline UFC 213.
— Brett Okamoto (@bokamotoESPN) May 23, 2017
The UFC tweeted out confirmation of the bout a few minutes later.
Romero (13-1, 8-0 UFC) has been on the sidelines since November when he stopped former champ Chris Weidman with a devastating flying knee. Whittaker (18-4, 9-2 UFC) is 6-0 since he moved up to middleweight, most recently wrecking top contender Ronaldo Souza on a UFC on Fox show last month.
Originally Bisping was supposed to fight St-Pierre for the main title, but GSP wanting the fight late in the year and a Bisping injury led to the creation of this interim bout.
The Romero-Whittaker matchup will serve as the co-headliner of the night, with a women’s bantamweight title fight between Amanda Nunes and Valentina Shevchenko headlining the show.
UFC 213 goes down on July 8th in Las Vegas.