Junior dos Santos is finally set to make his first title defense since winning the UFC heavyweight title, as his matchup with Alistair Overeem has been confirmed for UFC 146 on May 26th at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas. UFC CEO Lorenzo Fertitta mentioned the date was likely for the event earlier this year.
Dos Santos (14-1) defeated then-undefeated champion Cain Velasquez at UFC on Fox 1 in November to win the UFC heavyweight title. He holds an undefeated 8-0 record in the UFC, which includes victories over Velasquez, Shane Carwin, and Fabricio Werdum. This will be just his second fight in Las Vegas. The other fight took place at UFC 108, also held at the MGM Grand Garden Arena, where he knocked out Gilbert Yvel in the first round.
Overeem (36-11-1) returns to Las Vegas for the first time since making his long-awaited UFC debut at UFC 141 in December. Overeem defeated former champion Brock Lesnar in the first round via TKO. Prior to the transition to the UFC, Overeem had a distinguished career spanning from fighting in Japan for Pride and Dream to stateside fighting for Strikeforce. Overeem won the heavyweight championship in both Dream and Strikeforce, along with winning the 2010 K-1 World Grand Prix. He is the first fighter to ever win a world title in both MMA and K-1 kickboxing.
UFC 146 will be the first of two pay-per-view events to be held at MGM Grand Garden Arena this summer, with UFC 148 taking place there on July 7th, as well.
Along with the heavyweight championship main event, UFC 146 will also feature two surging lightweights in Edson Barboza and Evan Dunham, a welterweight matchup between Dan Hardy and Duane Ludwig, and a middleweight battle between Jason “Mayhem” Miller and C.B. Dollaway.
For complete coverage of UFC 146, stay tuned to MMAFrenzy.com