Chris Weidman vs. Owen Livesey superfight booked for Polaris 23

A superfight between Chris Weidman and Owen Livesey will join the women’s grand prix on Polaris 23.

Polaris 23 on March 11 is shaping up to be one of the biggest events in the UK-based promotion’s history.

In addition to the eight-woman, $20,000 grand prix, the main card will also feature a superfight between former UFC middleweight champion Chris Weidman and top British competitor Owen Livesey.

Although he is primarily known for his lengthy and accomplished career in MMA, Weidman is no stranger to elite grappling competitions. A two-time Division 1 All-American collegiate wrestler, the New York native won gold at the 2009 ADCC East Coast Trials after just a year of submission grappling training. Weidman would lose to eventual silver medalist Andre Galvao in the opening round at the ADCC World Championships that year in an ultra-competitive, high-paced match.

Weidman made his UFC debut in 2011 after compiling a 4-0 MMA record on the regional circuit. In 2013, he scored one of the sport’s most unforgettable upsets when he knocked out Anderson Silva to capture the UFC middleweight title. He successfully defended that title three times before losing it to Luke Rockhold in 2015. Since then, Weidman has won just two of his last seven fights, most recently suffering a gruesome leg break against Uriah Hall in April 2021.

Livesey has been one of the UK’s breakout stars over the past couple of years. Known for his explosive takedowns and top game, he is a three-time British judo champion. Livesey competed at the 2022 ADCC World Championships, losing in the first round to returning champion Kaynan Duarte. But just one week later, he defeated multiple-time ADCC veteran Josh Hinger by split decision at a Polaris event.

This submission-only matchup will likely be decided on the feet, with neither man typically willing to accept bottom position, and both possessing top-end takedowns. 

Women’s Grand Prix at Polaris 23

Additionally, seven participants have now been revealed for the eight-woman grand prix at Polaris 23. The final spot will go to the winner of a Polaris Contenders event set for February 4.

The bracket is already one of the most talent-rich in recent memory, featuring both 2022 ADCC World Champions and some of the best no-gi competitors in the world.

Check out the full Women’s Grand Prix lineup below:

How to watch: Polaris 23 takes place on March 11 and will air live on UFC Fight Pass (subscription required).

Ben Coate

Ben has been involved with grappling, whether through wrestling or Brazilian jiu-jitsu, essentially his entire life. After wrestling throughout his childhood, Ben found Brazilian jiu-jitsu as a young adult and quickly fell in love. He has been training for over ten years and currently holds the rank of brown belt, and remains involved in both the MMA and BJJ scene. Ben has been writing about combat sports since 2017. He has interviewed and profiled some of MMA's biggest stars, including multiple UFC champions.

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