Sonnen returns for middleweight contender match
HeavyMMA confirmed the news with sources close to the bout on Wednesday afternoon. The fight has been verbally agreed to, and contracts are expected to be issued shortly.
The bout is slated to be the co-main event of the pay per view at the Toyota Center in Houston.
Sonnen has been out of action since last August, when he lost to a last-second triangle in a title fight with Anderson Silva at UFC 117. He was granted an immediate rematch that was scheduled to take place in early 2011, but Sonnen tested positive for performance-enhancing drugs after the original bout and was suspended for twelve months. His suspension was reduced to six months after a hearing with the California State Athletic Commission, but was later turned into an indefinite suspension after the committee expressed dissatisfaction with Sonnen’s answers from the previous hearing. Sonnen’s California suspension ran out in late June and he is free to apply for a license in any state.
Sonnen’s issue with the commissions in Nevada and California will likely not factor into the fight in Texas, which has a notoriously lax commission.
Stann is riding a three-fight win streak over Mike Massenzio, Chris Leben and Jorge Santiago, and is quickly becoming one of the top contenders in the middleweight division. A victory over Sonnen would put him near a title shot with Silva in early 2012.