With Hatsu Hioki off the table and Dustin Poirier scheduled to fight next month it appears UFC featherweight phenom Jose Aldo’s next title-defense will come against Roufusport product Erik Koch. However, while the pairing seems to be in place, the actual date/location are up in the air until the UFC makes an official decision on whether Aldo will stay on the UFC 149 lineup as previously planned or fight in Brazil at UFC 147 with the card’s recent loss of Anderson Silva-Chael Sonnen Part Deux.
News of the match-up was first reported by MMAWeekly, confirming things with sources close to both fighters.
Koch holds an overall record of 13-1 with ten stoppages including seven by way of submission. His only loss came more than two years ago in a decision defeat to Chad Mendes while under WEC’s banner. The 23-year old has not fought since September but has won his last four fights including success against Raphael Assuncao and Jonathan Brookins.
In Aldo he will be facing one of the premier pound-for-pound fighters on the planet and easily the best 145er out there. The 21-1 Aldo has emerged with his hand raised in fourteen consecutive outings with a January knockout of Mendes in his most recent appearance.
UFC 147 is scheduled for June 23 and is already slated to feature a rematch between TUF Brasil coaches Wanderlei Silva-Vitor Belfort as well as Fabricio Werdum fighting Mike Russow. Comparably, UFC 149 is set for July 21 in Calgary, Alberta, Canada with bouts between Thiago Alves-Yoshihiro Akiyama and Cheick Kongo-Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira attached to the lineup.
PHOTO CREDIT – UFC