Former IFL heavyweight champ Ben Rothwell will look to improve to 2-1 in the UFC when promotion sets up shop in Denver this fall after spending a year on the sidelines due to injuries sustained in his outpointing of Gilbert Yvel last June. Standing in his way of a winning record in the Octagon will be Mark Hunt, a talented kickboxer with a solid fan-following based on his showings under the PRIDE banner.
News of the UFC 135 match-up was confirmed by the UFC after having been first reported through MMAWeekly on Monday.
Hunt was last seen at UFC 127 in February where he earned “Knockout of the Night” for his second-round smashing of Chris Tuchscherer. Prior to the victory the hard-hitting New Zealander had lost six straight fights after going 5-1 to open up his MMA career including success over Wanderlei Silva and Mirko “Cro Cop” Filipovic.
Their September 22 scrap only marks the third for Rothwell in as many years after going 1-1 in 2008 and notching earlier wins over Travis Fulton, Krzysztof Soszynski, Ricco Rodriguez, and Roy Nelson as part of the now defunct International Fight League. The 29-year old Rothwell is 31-7 in his career with a remarkable 28 wins by way of a finishing performance.
Rothwell vs. Hunt is the third officially announced fight attached to UFC 135 and joins Norifumi “Kid” Yamamoto’s pairing with Damacio Page, as well as welterweight great Matt Hughes’ attempt to remain relevant against original Ultimate Fighter winner Diego Sanchez, on the card. A title-fight between 205ers Jon Jones and Quinton “Rampage” Jackson is also rumored for the event.
PHOTO CREDIT – UFC