Another intriguing welterweight matchup has landed on UFC 269 — with Argentinian finisher, Santiago ‘Argentine Dagger’ Ponzinibbio booked to meet with Texas-born striker, Geoff ‘Handz of Steel’ Neal on the December 11. card. At the time of publication, an official venue or location for UFC 269 has yet to be determined by the organization.
Ponzinibbio, the #12 ranked contender in the official welterweight rankings, turned in an impressive unanimous decision victory Miguel Baeza back in June at UFC Vegas 28 — returning to the winner’s enclosure.
For Dana White’s Contender Series alum, Neal, the Austin native suffered his second straight blemish back in May at UFC Vegas 26 — dropping a unanimous decision loss of his own to division standout, Neil Magny. ESPN MMA reporter, Brett Okamoto was first to report the matchup of the two.
Earning Fight of the Night honors alongside Baeza in a truly entertaining showcase, La Plata native was tasked with rebounding from a stunning first round knockout loss to upcoming feature, Li Jingliang at UFC on ABC 1 in January on ‘Fight Island’. The loss snapped a stunning seven-fight winning spree for the Argentine.
Over the course of his career, Ponzinibbio has amassed a 28-4 record, lodging 15 knockouts to go with a further six separate submission successes. The American Top Team trainee has secured notable Octagon wins over the likes of common-foe, Magny, Gunnar Nelson, Mike Perry, Nordine Taleb, Zak Cummings, and Sean Strickland.
Making his Octagon debut back in June 2018, Neal landed in the promotion with a rear-naked choke win over Brian Camozzi, before then stopping Frank Camacho with a high-kick. In between a pair of high kick knockouts over both Niko Price and common-opposition, Perry, Neal managed to take a judging win over the #9 ranked, Belal Muhammad.
UFC 269 takes place on December 11. — with an undisputed lightweight title fight between reigning champion, Charles Oliveira and the #1 ranked former interim gold holder, Dustin Poirier slated to take main event status. In the co-headliner, two-weight champion, Amanda Nunes defends her bantamweight crown against the #6 ranked, Julianna Pena. The promotion has also since booked a high-stakes welterweight bout between the #3 rated, Leon Edwards and former two-time title challenger, the #6 ranked, Jorge Masvidal for the event.
Senior writer for FightBook MMA. An aspiring mixed martial arts reporter based in Ireland. Producer of news articles, interviews, opinion features, and exclusive features such as, ‘The Fallout’, ‘The Breakdown, and, ‘This Week In MMA’.
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