The UFC’s traditional blockbuster July pay-per-view (PPV), which will come in the form of July 8’s UFC 213 from the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas this year, may have just signed on a pivotal heavyweight bout.
Just moments ago, MMA Fighting confirmed a report that former UFC heavyweight champion Fabricio Werdum will meet former Strikeforce heavyweight champion Alistair Overeem at the midsummer spectacular.
The heavyweight legends have met twice before, with Werdum submitting Overeem in Pride FC back in 2006 before “The Demolition Man” got his revenge five years later in Strikeforce in a lackluster decision win where Werdum mainly flopped to the ground in a vain effort to get the hulking Dutch kickboxer to engage him on the ground.
No. 1-ranked Werdum has had a run of strange circumstances as of late, seeing fights with Cain Velasquez at UFC 207 and Ben Rothwell at UFC 211 in May fall apart due to his opponents being deemed unfit to fight and failing a USADA drug test, respectively. Former middleweight champion Luke Rockhold called him out for an oddly-matched bout, but Werdum refused after calling the AKA product ‘chicken’ before discussing a trilogy bout with Overeem, which is ultimately close to coming to fruition. ‘Vai Cavalo’ was most recently seen dismantling old foe Travis Browne.
Overeem has enjoyed a late-career resurgence of sorts, winning five out of his last six bouts while falling just short in a title bid against champion Stipe Miocic at last September’s UFC 203. “”The Reem” got back on track in impressive fashion with a vicious knee stoppage of fan favorite Mark Hunt at March 4’s UFC 209.
In a heavyweight division lacking true title contenders outside of the rising Francis Ngannou, this fight should potentially be for the next title shot against the winner of the Miocic vs. Junior dos Santos rematch in the main event of UFC 211.
The fight has not yet been officially confirmed by the UFC.