Three fights have been added to the UFC Fight Night 49 card in Tusla, Oklahoma, the most notable being a welterweight clash between Thiago Alves and Jordan Mein. Also added to the card is a flyweight tilt between Tim Elliott and Wilson Reis, with Tom Niinimaki facing Chas Skelly at featherweight.
Thiago Alves returned to action following a 25 month layoff in April, marking a successful return with a decision win over a tough welterweight in Seth Baczynski. Alves is a former title contender and has gone 12-6 during his UFC stint, earning victories over Josh Koscheck, Matt Hughes and John Howard. ‘The Pitbull’ is looking to work his way back up to the top of the welterweight ladder, and a win over Jordan Mein will go a long way.
Mein, a 24 year-old Canadian, has a wealth of experience inside the cage despite his young age. Fighting 37 times hitherto since debuting in 2006, ‘Young Gun’ has notched up wins over the likes of Josh Burkman and Tyler Stinson in an impressive career thusfar. He was equally impressive in his UFC debut, handing Dan Miller his first submission loss in a display that showcased why he is considered a massive prospect. Since then, Mein has lost to current #5 ranked Matt Brown on short notice after hurting Brown during the fight, then rebounded with a solid win over Hernani Perpetuo.
Wilson Reis will make his flyweight debut after a controversial loss to Iuri Alcantara, facing a respected 125-pounder in Tim Elliott. Reis made a successful UFC debut when replacing Kid Yamamoto against Ivan Menjivar via decision, before a questionable judges call in his last fight. The Brazilian will look to make an immediate statement by defeating #9 ranked Elliott, who has gone 2-3 inside the Octagon. However, the three losses suffered by Elliott have been to those ranked #1, #2 and #4 in the division, with wins over Louis Gaudinot and Jared Papazian showing what the 27 year-old is capable of.
The third fight announced for the card is likely to serve as a preliminary bout, as Chas Skelly and Tom Niinimaki look to bounce back from disappointing performances in their last Octagon appearances. Skelly suffered a loss to fellow prospect Mirsad Bektic, losing a majority decision, and as a result was handed the first L on his record. Niinimaki impressed in his UFC debut, but suffered a surprising submission loss to Niklas Backstrom under two weeks ago.
UFC Fight Night 49 is yet to have a confirmed headliner, with the event hosted at BOK Centre in Tulsa, Oklahoma. The main event is likely to be announced in the coming weeks.