With the first UFC event of 2011 less than a week away, some potential matchups have been announced for the New Year. Heavyweight prospects Brendan Schaub and Stefan Struve will face off while Anthony Johnson and Dan Hardy will touch gloves.
An anticipated matchup against Frank Mir has been nixed for Schaub, but he will instead face the rising Struve during a March UFC event. The matchup has not been announced by the UFC; however it has been confirmed by a number of MMA reporting organizations.
Brendan Schaub is coming off a unanimous decision victory against former UFC contender Gabriel Gonzaga. This three round contest was the first time that Schaub has fought outside the first round. Since his defeat at the hands of Roy Nelson at the Ultimate Fighter Season 10 Finale in 2009. This is Schaub’s only defeat in eight professional fights.
Stefan Struve is also coming off a dominate performance when he stopped Sean McCorkle in the first round at UFC 124.Struve is 5-2 while fighting for the UFC with his only defeats coming to current number one contender Junior Dos Santos and Roy Nelson.
Potential sites for this matchup include UFC 128 and UFC Fight Night 24 which occur on March 19 and 26 respectively.
These March events may also have another hard hitting matchup as Anthony Johnson and Dan Hardy have agreed to face each other as reported by Sherdog.com. Both fighters are coming off of recent defeats and their styles could create a clash to keep fans on their feet.
Dan Hardy has had a tough 2010 as he suffered two crushing defeats. First, he was shut out by UFC Welterweight champion Georges St. Pierre at UFC 111, and then he was knocked out for the first time in his career by Carlos Condit at UFC 120. Hardy’s resume includes wins over Mike Swick, Marcus Davis and Akihiro Gono. Hardy is looking to end his first career, back to back losing skid.
Anthony Johnson is looking to return to the cage and his winning ways since he last competed against Josh Koscheck at UFC 106 in December of 2009. Johnson has a solid slate in the UFC with a 5-3 record since his first fight in the promotion in 2007. All of his victories in the Octagon have come by way of knockout. He was forced to withdraw from a planned matchup with John Howard due to an injury.
With two events planned in two weeks, March is shaping up to be a solid month of action for the Ultimate Fighting Championship.
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