Chris Hofmann, URCC
Filipino welterweight Chris Hofmann will be part of the festivities at the opening round of Road to UFC Season 2 on May 27-28, 2023. Chris Hofmann/Facebook


  • The UFC has announced it will be holding Road to UFC Season 2 in late May
  • UFC contracts will again be awarded to those who win their respective divisions
  • The UFC Performance Institute in Shanghai, China will serve as the venue of the festivities

The mixed martial arts (MMA) scene in Asia has produced some big names through the years in different combat sports promotions around the globe like the UFC, ONE Championship and BRAVE Combat Federation among many others.

In the case of the UFC, the Dana White-led promotion is always on the lookout for its next big breakout stars and the company plans to do so once again this year with the reveal of "Road To UFC Season 2."

32 Asian MMA prospects across the flyweight, bantamweight, featherweight and lightweight divisions will be competing in the main tournament while four non-tournament bouts have been added to the proceedings.

The tournament brackets are as follows:

Flyweight (>56.7kg)

  • Rei Tsuruya (Japan) vs Ronal Siahaan (Indonesia)
  • Mark Climaco (Philippines) vs Jung Hyun Lee (South Korea)
  • Ji Niushiyue (China) vs Billy Pasulatan (Indonesia)
  • Sumit Kumar (India) vs Seung Guk Choi (South Korea)

Bantamweight (>61.2kg)

  • Xiao Long (China) vs Shohei Nose (Japan)
  • Shuya Kamikubo (Japan) vs Jieleyisi Baergeng (China)
  • Eperaim Ginting (Indonesia) vs Daermisi Zhawupasi (China)
  • Chang Ho Lee (South Korea) vs Rana Rudra Pratap Singh (India)

Featherweight (>65.8kg)

  • Yi Zha (China) vs Abdul Azeem Badakhshi (Afghanistan)
  • Keisuke Sasu (Japan) vs Sang Won Kim (Korea)
  • Yibugele (China) vs Koya Kanda (Japan)
  • Li Kaiwen (China) vs Reza Arianto (Indonesia)

Lightweight (>70.3kg)

  • Seong Chan Hong (South Korea) vs Rong Zhu (China)
  • Kazuma Maruyama (Japan) vs Sang Uk Kim (South Korea)
  • Windri Patilima (Indonesia) vs Shin Haraguchi (Japan)
  • Won Bin Ki (South Korea) vs Batebolati Bahatebole (China)

As for the non-tournament bouts, two flyweight bouts are slated to take place between Top Noi Kiwram and Peter Danasoe will face Nyamjargal Tumendemberel of Mongolia and Sim Kai Xiong of Singapore respectively.

South Korean welteweights Sang Hoon Yoo and Han Seul Kim take on Chris Hoffman of the Philippines and Nueraji Taiyilake of China respectively to round out the non-tournament bouts.

Much like last year's tournament, the rule for Road to UFC is extremely simple: athletes who win their bouts advance to the next round and those who eventually win their respective divisions earn a UFC contract.

The opening round of Road to UFC Season 2 will take place on May 27 and 28 at the UFC Performance Institute in Shanghai, China –a remarkable facility that boasts 93,000 square feet which also houses the UFC's regional headquarters.

More information regarding the UFC's Asian-centric tournament will be announced at a later date according to a press release sent to the International Business Times.

Dana White
UFC President, Dana White walks on stage during pre-race ceremonies prior to the NASCAR Cup Series South Point 400 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway on September 26, 2021 in Las Vegas, Nevada. Steph Chambers/Getty Images