M-1 officials announced the promotion's return to Showtime -- dubbed M-1 Challengers 27 -- has been scheduled for October 14th and will be headlined by a trio of championship fights. Global director of operations Evgeni Kogan broke the news to MMA Fighting on Tuesday morning.
The card's anticipated main event features a heavyweight championship rematch between Guram Gugenishvili (11-0) and Kenny Garner (7-3). The pair met once before at ‘M-1 Challenge XXI: Guram vs. Garner,' with Gugenishvili claiming victory via a second-round guillotine choke to earn the promotion's global heavyweight title.
Also featured is a light-heavyweight title fight between incumbent champion Vinny Magalhaes (8-5) and incoming challenger Mikhail Zayats (14-5). Magalhaes has won six of his last seven fights -- including four straight -- since exiting the UFC after his run to the finals of ‘The Ultimate Fighter 8.' Zayats, a longtime M-1 veteran, has also won four consecutive fights, brutally finishing each opponent -- including two first round submissions.
The final scheduled title bout is a lightweight match between Jose Figueroa (10-4) and Daniel Weichel (27-7) . Figueroa is M-1's only American champion and has won three straight, including a second-round knockout of Artiom Damkovsky in March that earned him the belt. Weichel has won three straight bouts within the promotion, and nine of his last ten overall.
M-1 Challengers 27 is the third M-1 event to air live on Showtime and is scheduled for 11:00 p.m. broadcast. No venue has been finalized.