Following the lead of a number of his peers, Steve Cantwell will attempt to steer his career back on course by dropping down divisions. The final WEC light heavyweight title-holder’s 185-pound debut will take place on October 8 at UFC 136 where he will face 12-5 Mike Massenzio, a middleweight most of the time who got a taste of Cantwell’s old stomping grounds in June as a late replacement against Krzysztof Soszynski.
The match-up was announced earlier today through the UFC’s website.
The 7-4 Cantwell’s change in weight-classes comes after losing three straight decisions with an eighteen-month injury break in the mix too. Prior to the stretch the 24-year old had won four consecutive fights including a TKO of Brian Stann at WEC 45 and brutal submission against Razak Al-Hassan.
Massenzio has had some decent success as a middleweight with past victories over Drew McFedries and Dan Miller but has dropped his last three fights in the Octagon. However, perhaps providing him a little leeway in terms of career stability, the New Jersey native took a fight with Soszynski at UFC 131 only a few days out from the event and still went the distance despite an obvious size disadvantage.
Their meeting in Houston adds to an already stacked UFC 136 lineup including a pair of championship clashes with lightweight Frank Edgar defending his belt against Gray Maynard and 145-pound phenom Jose Aldo taking on former lightweight contender Ken Florian.
PHOTO CREDIT – UFC