Ma Dong-Hyun faces Scott Holtzman at UFC Newark
South Korean slugger Ma Dong-Hyun has been pitted against Scott Holtzman in a lightweight contest at UFC on ESPN 5 on August 3 at the Prudential Center in Newark, New Jersey.
Earlier reports coming out of South Korea that these two were fighting at UFC Shenzhen proved to be premature and fans will get this excited matchup earlier than expected.
Ma (16-9), formerly known as Kim Dong-Hyun, had a rocky start to his UFC career with two consecutive TKO losses to Dominique Steele and Polo Reyes. Between late 2016 to early 2018, he was able to turn the tide by knocking off three straight opponents, most notably Takanori Gomi at UFC Fight Night 117 in Japan.
After obtaining a split decision win over Damien Brown in Perth, he returned to Australia at UFC 234 earlier this year and took on Devonte Smith. The 30-year-old was stung early and finished with devastating strikes to end his streak.
Holtzman, likewise, had a three-fight run broken in his last appearance in the Octagon. At UFC on ESPN 1 in February he was outclassed by Nik Lentz and lost on the scorecards via unanimous decision.
Enlisted as the headliner is a massive welterweight tilt between two former champions of the division, Colby Covington (14-1) and Robbie Lawler (28-13). While Covington will be returning after sitting on the sidelines since winning the interim title 14 months ago against Rafael Dos Anjos, the 37-year-old Lawler is 1-2 since losing the strap to Tyron Woodley back at UFC 201.
Also, the promotion has rescheduled the light heavyweight clash between Volkan Oezdemir (15-4) and Illir Latifi (14-6) for the the co-main event. These two power punchers were supposed to face off at UFC Stockholm on June 1st but unfortunately Latifi suffered a back injury days before the event.