UFC Fight Night 79 in Korea: “Smooth” Henderson and “Stun Gun” Kim get new opponents

UFC in Korea: Kim Dong-Hyun and Benson Henderson
UFC in Korea: Kim Dong-Hyun and Benson Henderson

The Ultimate Fighting Championship will be having it’s first event in Seoul, South Korea, UFC Fight Night 79, on November 28th, 2015 at the Olympic Gymnastics Arena. Benson Henderson and Jorge Masvidal will be the new main event and Kim Dong-Hyun will face TUF 16 contestant Dominic Waters as the co-main.

Back in early September at a press conference in Seoul, the UFC officially announced the main event for UFC Fight Night 79 between former WEC and UFC lightweight champion Benson “Smooth” Henderson (22-5) and deadly welterweight striker Thiago “Pitbull” Alves (21-10). Also, PRIDE FC legend Mirko “Cro Cop” (31-11-2,1 NC) was added to the lineup to infuse a little firepower and draw the fans from his heyday in the Japanese promotion.

However, not all good things can stay intact.

The first big hit this card took happened early last week when Mirko “Cro Cop” was forced out of the co-main event against Anthony Hamilton (14-4) due to a shoulder injury that propelled his retirement from competition. Consequently, the UFC has pulled Hamilton from the card and will be match him up with another opponent on a later date.

Then, a few days later Thiago Alves had to withdraw from his main event slot because of a broken rib sustained during his preparations.

In less than a week, the main and co-main events were in shambles which put the UFC in a tight spot. On two weeks notice, the promotion had to find a replacement for Alves and repair the damage done by the injury bug.

Luckily, the UFC had a few welterweight fights on the card. The former Strikeforce lighweight title challenger Jorge “Gamebreed” Masvidal (29-9) was originally preparing to face Kim “Stun Gun” Dong-Hyun (20-3-1) earlier in the night has been tapped to take his teammates place as the headliner against Henderson. Both of them have something in common in that they have recently moved up a weight class and finished their adversaries.

This left Kim without an opponent until The Ultimate Fighter Season 16 cast member Dominic “Shonuff” Waters (9-3) was called up to take the vacant spot. This is not unfamiliar territory for Waters since he filled in for Marcio Alexandre Jr. at the TUF 21 Finale in July with a week’s notice. Even though he has less than two weeks to prepare, this is an opportunity of a lifetime for the Marine Corps veteran. This fight will be the new co-headliner for the event.

That left one spot open on the main card and therefore the welterweight contest between Lim Hyun-Gyu (13-5-1) and Dominique Steele (13-6) will fill that void.

Hopefully, nothing else happens that will put any other fight in jeopardy.

UFC Fight Night 79: Henderson vs Masvidal
November 28th, 2015
Olympic Gymnastics Arena
Seoul, South Korea

Welterweight Main Event Match (-77kg,-170lb)
Benson Henderson (USA) vs Jorge Masvidal (USA)

Welterweight Co-Main Event Match (-77kg,-170lb)
Kim Dong-Hyun (South Korea) vs Dominic Waters (USA)

Welterweight Match (-77kg,-170lb)
Choo Sung-Hoon (South Korea) vs Alberto Mina (Brazil)

Welterweight Match (-77kg,-170lb)
Lim Hyun-Gyu (South Korea) vs Dominique Steele (USA)

Featherweight Match (-65.8kg,-145lb)
Choi Doo-Ho (South Korea) vs Sam Sicilia (USA)

Featherweight Match (-65.8kg,-145lb)
Nam Yui-Chul (South Korea) vs Mike De La Torres (USA)

Lightweight Match (-70kg,-155lbs)
Bang Tae-Hyun (South Korea) vs Leo Kuntz (USA)

Middleweight Match (-84kg,-185lb)
Yang Dongi (South Korea) vs Jake Collier (USA)

Women’s Strawweight Match (-52.2kg,-115lb)
Ham Seo-Hee (South Korea) vs Cortney Casey-Sanchez (USA)

Flyweight Match (-56.7kg,-125lb)
Fredy Serrano (Columbia) vs Yao Zhikui (China)

Bantamweight Match (-61.2kg,-135lb)
Marco Antonio Beltran (Mexico) vs Ning Guangyou (China)