A trio of bouts with heavy implications have been added to the upcoming July UFC on Fox event. The bouts will feature two former title contenders and a former champion will be featured on the card that will take place in Chicago, Illinois. The announcements were made on “UFC Tonight”.
Former UFC women’s bantamweight champion Holly Holm (10-1) will make her first appearance since losing the belt to Miesha Tate at UFC 196. Holm and her team had requested a rematch with Tate as many had Holm in the lead before being choked out by Tate late in the fifth round. She will face off against Valentina Shevchenko (12-2) who is currently ranked 9th in the bantamweight division and is coming off a loss to current number one contender Amanda Nunes.
Also added to the card is a critical light heavyweight bout between former title challengers Anthony “Rumble” Johnson and Glover Teixeira. Teixeira (25-4) is fresh off a victory over Rashad Evans and during his post fight speech he called for a bout with Johnson, who was in attendance. The UFC must have really liked the idea because the bout is now officially a-go.
Since losing to Daniel Cormier at UFC 187 for the vacant light heavyweight title, Johnson (21-5) has won two consecutive fights via knockout and is right back in position for another crack at the title.
The final match-up announced for the Chicago card will be a featured lightweight fight between Strikfore champion Gilbert Melendez and Edson Barboza. This will be Melendez’ first bout back after serving a one-year suspension for testing positive for performance enhancing drugs. Though he is only 1-3 in the UFC, Melendez (22-5 overall) is still considered one of the best lightweights in the organization.
Barboza (17-4) is fresh off the biggest win of his career when he defeated former lightweight champion Anthony Pettis at UFC 197. Barboza is currently ranked number six and has fought many of the division’s toughest fighters including Tony Ferguson, Donald Cerrone, and Bobby Green.
UFC on Fox will take place on July 23 from the United Center in Chicago, Illinois.