It was all but assumed the victor of the UFC 122 battle between Nate Marquardt and Yushin Okami would get next dibs at the middleweight crown. However, Octagon brass finally made it official by GUARANTEEING it Tuesday in Spike TV’s press release.
The König-Pilsener-Arena in Oberhausen will host the 11-bout fight card. The edgy network will once again treat North Americans to a freebie same-day tape-delay broadcast of the event’s main bouts starting at 9PM ET/PT.
Marquardt bounced back from a disappointing showing against Chael Sonnen at UFC 109 in February by quickly disposing of Rousimar Palhares at “UFC Fight Night 22.”
Okami, on the other hand, is fresh off a split decision win over Mark Munoz at “UFC on Versus 2.” The talented Japanese star has won five of his last six scraps. His only loss during the stretch came to the aforementioned Sonnen.
“The Spider” holds a devastating TKO victory over Marquardt from back in July 2007, while Okami was the last man to hang a loss on Silva. He took a controversial DQ win in January 2006 at “Rumble on the Rock 8” when Silva handed an illegal kick to the dome.
Vitor Belfort was slated to stand opposite Okami, but was presented with an unexpected opportunity courtesy of Sonnen’s failed UFC 117 drug test. The alleged PED abuser was awarded an immediate rematch with champion Anderson Silva, however an impending suspension and tainted performance quickly put that chatter to bed.
Belfort will now challenge the planet’s baddest 185-pounder for his title at UFC 126 during Super Bowl weekend. Although that hasn’t been “officially” announced, either.
Here are the fighters that will be participating in the extravaganza:
Carlos Eduardo Rocha vs. Kris McCray
Seth Petruzelli vs. Karlos Vemola
Duane “Bang” Ludwig vs. Nick Osipczak
Pascal Krauss vs. Mark Scanlon
Alexandre Ferreira vs. Vladimir Matyushenko
Rob Kimmons vs. Kyle Noke
Krzysztof Soszynski vs. Goran Reljic
Amir Sadollah vs. Peter Sobotta
Dennis Siver vs. Andre Winner
Jorge Rivera vs. Alessio Sakara
Nate Marquardt vs. Yushin Okami