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Dominick Reyes, Jan Blachowicz to meet for vacant light heavyweight title at UFC 253

It won’t take long for the UFC to crown a new light heavyweight champion after Jon Jones vacated, with Dominick Reyes and Jan Blachowicz set to meet at UFC 253 in September.

After Jones (25-1 MMA, 20-1 UFC) announced on Monday he’d come to an agreement with the UFC to relinquish the belt, the promotion moved fast with plans to crown a new titleholder.

UFC president Dana White confirmed Reyes (12-1 MMA, 6-1 UFC) and Blachowicz (26-8 MMA, 9-5 UFC) will clash for the vacant title during a Tuesday appearance on “SportsCenter.” This comes after an initial report from ESPN.

Reyes, No. 2 in the latest USA TODAY Sports/MMA Junkie light heavyweight rankings, will get a second chance at the belt after he fell short against Jones at UFC 247 in February. He lost a controversial decision to end the unbeaten start to his career and has been pushing for a rematch against Jones since.

Reyes won’t get the chance to run it back right now, but he will get another opportunity to claim the 205-pound strap.

Standing in his way will be No. 5 Blachowicz, who is riding a three-fight winning streak against Corey Anderson, Ronaldo Souza and Luke Rockhold. The Polish fighter has won seven of his past eight bouts overall to set up his first crack at UFC gold.

The latest UFC 253 lineup now includes:

  • Israel Adesanya vs. Paulo Costa – for middleweight title
  • Jan Blachowicz vs. Dominick Reyes – for vacant light heavyweight title
  • Marion Reneau vs. Ketlen Vieira
  • Kai Kara-France vs. Brandon Royval
  • Claudia Gadelha vs. Yan Xiaonan
  • Hakeem Dawodu vs. Zubaira Tukhugov
  • Sarah Alpar vs. Jessica-Rose Clark
  • Randy Costa vs. Journey Newson
  • Mirsad Bektic vs. Eduardo Garagorri
  • Jake Matthews vs. Diego Sanchez
  • Brad Riddell vs. Alex da Silva
  • Nate Landwehr vs. Shane Young
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