A welterweight match up between UFC 123 winner B.J. Penn and contender Jon Fitch is set for UFC 127 in Sydney, Australia, as is a lightweight tilt between George Sotiropoulos and Dennis Siver.
UFC president Dana White wasted little time in announcing the two match ups, revealing the promotion’s plans following UFC 123.
Originally set to face Jake Ellenberger, Fitch, who has gone 5-0 since his disappointing loss to champion Georges St. Pierre at UFC 87, now faces an opponent in the main event of UFC 127 who could very well be his ticket to a title shot that some consider long overdue . Fitch last competed at UFC 117 this past August, dominating Thiago Alves and winning a unanimous decision in a somewhat lackluster co-main event.
Penn was featured in the co-main event of UFC 123 last night against former champion and UFC Hall of Famer Matt Hughes. The former lightweight champion needed just 21 seconds to take home the rubber-match victory, knocking Hughes out senseless is the opening moments of the fight. The victory was Penn’s first since December of 2009 and snapped Hughes’ three-fight winning streak. He stated in the post-fight press conference that he wanted to stay active and was going to let White decide who and when he would be fighting next, and the boss certainly did not hesitate to take Penn up on the offer.
In the other announced bout, lightweights Sotiropoulos and Siver are set to meet in a bout that almost certainly has title implications for the Australian submission ace.
Sotiropoulos battled through a difficult first round at UFC 123 last evening against Joe Lauzon and came back strong in the second, locking on a submission to secure the victory. The submission ace is now 7-0 in the UFC, with other notable wins coming against former top contender Joe Stevenson and the always dangerous Kurt Pellegrino.
Siver, meanwhile, displayed some submission prowess of his own in his last outing, forcing “Ultimate Fighter” winner Andre Winner to tap to a rear naked choke in their main card bout. The win was Siver’s second in a row, with the other coming over Spencer Fisher at “The Ultimate Fighter 11 Finale” back in June.
The two bouts have been added to the main card of UFC 127, which is set for Sydney, Australia’s Acer Arena on February 27. The main event will feature the aforementioned welterweights Penn and Fitch, while a middleweight match up between Jorge Rivera and Michael Bisping is also expected to take a main card slot. Another rumored bout, a welterweight tilt between contenders Chris Lytle and Carlos Condit, will likely find a spot on the pay-per-view portion of the event as well.