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USA Today Sports Media Group
USA Today Sports Media Group
Nolan King

Nate Diaz protege Chris Avila to box YouTuber on Jake Paul vs. Anderson Silva card

Nate Diaz isn’t the only member of Nick Diaz Army trading in MMA gloves for boxing ones.

Former UFC fighter Chris Avila has joined the Jake Paul vs. Anderson Silva card. Sticking with the theme of MMA vs. YouTubers, Avila will battle content creator Mikhail Varshavski (0-0), also known as “Doctor Mike.” Most Valuable Promotions announced the bout Tuesday after an initial report by ESPN.

The event takes place Oct. 29 at Gila Rivera Arena in Glendale, Ariz., with the main card airing on Showtime pay-per-view.

A previously scheduled MMA bout between Avila and Lance Gibson Jr. at Bellator 286 on Oct. 1 has been canceled, per promotion officials. Gibson (6-0 MMA, 4-0 BMMA) will now face replacement Dominic Clark (15-12 MMA, 0-2 UFC).

Avila, 29, has bounced around in major combat sports organizations in recent years. Following an 0-2 stint in the UFC, Avila has gone 3-5 with stops in Bellator and Combate Global, among other promotions.

He most recently competed in a boxing match on the Jake Paul vs. Tyron Woodley 2 undercard when he defeated former Bellator fighter Anthony Taylor by majority decision. Prior to that, his previous boxing bout came in 2014 and was a unanimous decision loss.

Varshavski, 32, has found internet success since 2015 through his Instagram and YouTube channels. Named “The Sexiest Doctor Alive” by People magazine in 2015, Varshavski has since amassed 10.1 million followers on YouTube and another 4.4 million on Instagram. His videos feature a doctor’s perspective on a wide range of topics from pop culture to health hacks to everyday encounters with physicians – viewed through a medical lens.

“Doctor Mike” competed in his first and only amateur boxing match in May when he defeated fellow YouTuber personality iDubbbz by unanimous decision in the headlining bout of “Creator Clash” in Tampa, Fla.

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