A middleweight bout between Brad Tavares and Phil Baroni is official for UFC 125 this January.
The Ultimate Fighting Championship announced the match up earlier today.
Baroni, who returned to the promotion at UFC 116 after a lengthy stint away from the promotion, dropped a unanimous decision to Amir Sadollah after three disappointing rounds from the MMA veteran. He was originally set to return to action at the middleweight mark against John Salter at UFC 118, but an injury forced him off of the card, postponing his opportunity at the redemption he seeks at this point in his career.
His opponent, Tavares, displayed his potential throughout his run on “The Ultimate Fighter 11”. Though he did not earn the title of “The Ultimate Fighter”, he did walk away with a unanimous decision victory over Seth Baczynski in the season finale, securing his job with the promotion. At the age of 22, Tavares is an impressive 6-0 as a professional with five of those victories coming by way of stoppage.
The bout is set to serve as a preliminary match up on UFC 125, which is set for January 1 in Las Vegas. The card will be headlined by a lightweight title fight between champion Frankie Edgar and top contender Gray Maynard. Featherweight champion Jose Aldo was originally slated to defend his belt in the co-main event against Josh Grispi, but an injury has forced him off of the card.