After losing in controversial fashion to Shane Nelson at UFC 96 this past March, Aaron Riley is now set to receive his long-awaited rematch this coming August at UFC 101 at the Wachovia Center in Philadelphia.
MMAWeekly.com was the first to report the news, which confirmed the rematch with a source close to Nelson’s camp.
Referee Rick Fike declared Nelson the winner via TKO just 44 seconds into the bout soon after Nelson dropped Riley with a punch. Nelson went in for the finish while Riley began to defend himself and Fike inexplicably called a premature stop to the fight.
Nelson’s victory over Riley improved his record to 12-3. The B.J. Penn-trained fighter is a Hawaiian native and prior to the UFC had spent most of his career competing on the Islands. While fighting for promotions just as X-1 and Rumble on the Rock, Nelson posted notable victories over Kaleo Kwan and Harris Sarmiento.
Coming off the heels of a six-fight win streak, Nelson was cast for the eighth season of The Ultimate Fighter last January and made it to the final field of 16 after winning a qualifying bout against Charles Diaz. However, he was eliminated following a loss in the every next round when he was submitted by eventual lightweight show winner Efrain Escudero. He then rebounded during the show’s live season finale on Dec. 13 after recording a split decision victory over George Roop.
Riley made his UFC return at UFC 91 in November and won a unanimous decision against Jorge Gurgel. Currently 27-11-1 overall with a lifetime record of 1-3 inside the Octagon, the 12-year veteran is currently on this third tour of duty with the UFC and has also competed for PRIDE and BodogFIGHT.
UFC 101 is currently scheduled to be headlined by Nelson’s trainer, B.J. Penn, defending the UFC lightweight title against number one contender Kenny Florian.