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Curtis Blaydes vs. Jailton Almeida targeted for UFC main event in Sao Paulo


Jailton Almeida is about to take the leap, and he’s going to do it in front of a hometown crowd.

The UFC is targeting a heavyweight showdown between Almeida and Curtis Blaydes to serve as the main event for a Fight Night event in the UFC’s return to Sao Paulo, Brazil, which is expected to take place on Nov. 4. The UFC has yet to make the matchup official, but multiple sources confirmed the fight to MMA Fighting. The bout was originally reported by MMA Junkie.

Almeida is one of the hottest prospects in all of MMA. Debuting in 2022, Almeida put together a dominant year, winning MMA Fighting’s Rookie of the Year award for his three first-round finishes. “Malhadinho” has kept up that same torrid pace in 2023 with two stoppage wins already, launching him up to No. 6 in the MMA Fighting Global Rankings. A win over Blaydes would not only be the biggest of his career, it could secure a title shot for the surging Brazilian.

While Almeida has put together an enviable 2023 already, Blaydes’ year has been catastrophic. A stalwart of the heavyweight top 5, Blaydes finally worked his way to the cusp of a title shot, with only Sergei Pavlovich standing in his way; unfortunately, that didn’t last long. Just over three minutes after facing off with the Russian fighter, Blaydes found himself staring up at the lights and his shattered dreams. Now the JUCO national champion wrestler looks to start his build back to the title picture by stopping the division’s most exciting prospect.

Guilherme Cruz and Damon Martin contributed to this report.

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