Christopher Reive runs through all you need to know for the UFC 263 card, headlined by Israel Adesanya's UFC title defence against Marvin Vettori.
So, what's going on?
UFC middleweight champion Israel Adesanya returns to defend his title this Sunday after a brief trip to the light heavyweight division earlier in the year. Adesanya will put his title on the line against Marvin Vettori in what will be the first rematch of his mixed martial arts career.
Adesanya won't be the only Kiwi in action, with lightweight Brad Riddell getting his first shot at a ranked opponent, meeting American Drew Dober.
The fights will go down at Gila River Arena in Glendale, Arizona, in front of a full crowd.
What can you tell us about their opponents?
Let's start with the title challenger, Marvin Vettori. The 27-year-old in bidding to become the first ever UFC champion from Italy, though he trains at Kings MMA in Huntington Beach, California. Since losing a split decision to Adesanya in 2018, Vettori has won five straight, with one win by submission and four decisions. Of his last five opponents, two have been ranked in the top 10 of the middleweight division at the time of the bouts.
Vettori is an aggressive fighter. He likes to push forward and put pressure on his opponent with strikes, before testing his wrestling and seeing if he can take the fight to the mat. Comfortable wherever the fight is, Vettori is a game competitor and always brings an intense energy with him into his fights.
Drew Dober, on the other hand, is about as relaxed a fighter as you will find when he makes his walk to the octagon and goes about his work. Dober is a striker by trade and will relish the opportunity to go against a fellow stand-up fighter in Riddell after being smothered by the wrestling-heavy approach of Islam Makhachev in his last fight. Dober is a durable opponent, having never been knocked out in his UFC career, and has plenty of power in his hands. His bout with Riddell is sure to bring the action.
In a rather fun coincidence, Dober is a former training partner of New Zealand's Dan Hooker, who was with Elevation Fight Team in Denver a few years back before returning to City Kickboxing in Auckland, where he is now a training partner of Riddell's.
What happened last time Adesanya and Vettori met?
Adesanya won by split decision. However, a split decision result was generous to Vettori, who was outworked in the first two rounds. Despite pushing the action and being the forward-moving fighter, Adesanya sat back and countered everything Vettori through at him, avoiding taking on a lot of damage and making sure his own shots landed.
While Vettori still believes he won their first encounter, he wasn't able to assert his game until the third and final round, taking Adesanya to the mat but being unable to do much with the position. While Adesanya got the win, it was one of his toughest UFC appearances to date.
Anything else exciting on the card outside of Adesanya and Riddell?
The question here should really be if there is a fight that isn't worth watching. The UFC 263 card is an absolute treat. On the main card, the men's flyweight title is up for grabs between Deiveson Figueiredo and Brandon Moreno, while Nate Diaz makes his return in a five-round bout against highly ranked welterweight Leon Edwards.
Outside of those, the light heavyweight bout between Jamahal Hill and Paul Craig is sure to be one for the fans, while Movsar Evloev and Hakeem Dawodu square off in a bout between two terrific featherweight prospects.
There isn't a dull match-up on this card, so kudos to the matchmakers on that.
I only care about the Kiwi boys. What time will they be fighting?
Riddell's bout against Dober will be on around 1.30pm. Adesanya will fight later in the day, not before 4pm.
How can I watch it all?
The early prelims kick off at 10am on Sunday on UFC Fight Pass – the company's streaming platform.
The main prelims get underway at midday on UFC Fight Pass, ESPN, Sky Sport Now and Prime. Riddell's bout will be the final fight of this section of the card.
The main card gets underway at 3pm and is available to watch on pay-per-view on Sky Arena, Sky Sport Now, Spark Sport or UFC Fight Pass.
The Herald will have live coverage of the card from 1.00pm.