According to the official Xtreme Couture blog Wanderlei Silva, who has recently moved to America to train with Xtreme Couture, will make his long awaited return to the UFC on December 29th at UFC 79 in Las Vegas. The card is headlined by a main event welterweight title bout between Matt Serra and Matt Hughes.
Although the report does not confirm that former UFC Light Heavyweight Champion Chuck Liddell will be his opponent sources indicate that the two are very likely to face off on the PPV card if Liddell gets past Keith Jardine at UFC 76 in September.
In 1998 Silva had a short stay in the UFC losing his debut bout to Vitor Belfort in just 44 seconds. He recovered in his next fight to defeat Tony Petarra by KO to earn a shot at Tito Ortiz and the UFC’s middleweight (now light heavyweight) championship. Silva lost the bout via decision. Despite the lack of success in the UFC Silva remained dominant in PRIDE including a stretch of 18 straight fights without recording a loss. “The Axe Murdered” is just 4-4 in his last 8 bouts including back-to-back losses to Mirko “Cro Cop” Filipovic and Dan Henderson in his last two fights.
Despite the losses to very tough competition Silva remains a consensus top 10 fighter in the light heavyweight division and will bolster one of the UFC’s stronger divisions even further when he returns to the UFC in December.