Oliveira makes 145 his third weight class
After going winless for the last year, Oliveira recently said he intended to move to 145 pounds, and confirmed it on Twitter last week. Wisely also will be making a drop in weight class. The two fighters are expected to meet on the preliminary card of UFC on Fox 2, which takes place Jan. 28 at the United Center in Chicago. MMA Junkie first brought news of the fight on Sunday.
Oliveira (14-2, 1 NC, 2-2, 1 NC UFC) started his career 12-0 before he got the call to come to the UFC. And his UFC career started just as successfully with back-to-back Submission of the Night wins over Darren Elkins and Efrain Escudero. But then he ran into the red-hot Jim Miller, who submitted him with a kneebar at UFC 124 a year ago. In June, he beat Nik Lentz at UFC on Versus 4 in Pittsburgh, but the fight was overturned to a no contest after review by the Pennsylvania commission from an illegal knee by Oliveira. He returned quickly in August, but lost by TKO to fast-rising contender Donald Cerrone at UFC on Versus 5.
Oliveira fought at welterweight early in his career in Brazil before moving to lightweight. Featherweight now will be his third weight class.
Wisely made his major MMA debut in August at Strikeforce Challengers 18, but dropped a unanimous decision to Pat Healy. But the Iowa native went 3-1 in 2011, including a win over UFC veteran Matt Veach. Wisely also owns two career victories over UFC vet Hermes Franca and a victory over Bellator and WEC vet Scott McAfee.
UFC on Fox 2 will be the promotion’s first visit to Chicago since UFC 90, which was headlined by a middleweight title fight between Anderson Silva and Patrick Cote. That event took place in the north Chicago suburb of Rosemont at the Allstate Arena. The United Center, home of the NBA’s Chicago Bulls and NHL’s Chicago Blackhawks, is situated downtown.
Silva will again figure into the storyline at UFC on Fox 2, though indirectly. Saturday, the UFC announced the co-main event for the card will be a middleweight bout between Chael Sonnen and Mark Munoz, with the winner expected to face Silva in the summer after he recovers from an injury suffered in his last title defense. Headlining the card will be a light heavyweight bout between former champ Rashad Evans and Phil Davis. The winner of that fight is expected to face the winner of Saturday’s UFC 140 main event between champion Jon Jones and former titleholder Lyoto Machida.