Former UFC middleweight champion Rich Franklin will return to the 205-pound light heavyweight division at UFC 88 to take on “The Ultimate Fighter 3” cast member Matt Hamill. Franklin (23-3) is coming off a TKO victory over Travis Lutter at UFC 83 and has lost just three times in his 26-fight career: twice to current UFC middleweight champion and to UFC light heavyweight contender Lyoto Machida. Hamill (4-1) won his first bout on “The Ultimate Fighter” but was unable to continue in the competition due to injuries. After winning three straight bouts following the show Hamill lost a controversial split decision to Michael Bisping but bounced back with a second-round TKO win over Tim Boetsch in April.
Former PRIDE welterweight and middleweight champion Dan Henderson will look to bouce back from back-to-back losses against up-and-coming middleweight Rousimar Palhares. Henderson (22-7) most-recently dropped back-to-back bouts against UFC champions Quinton Jackson and Anderson Silva but had previously won six of his last seven fights. Palhares (8-1) defeated veteran Ivan Salaverry via first-round submission in his UFC debut in May and has won six straight bouts.
Longtime welterweight contender Karo Parisyan will look to bounce back against up-and-comer Yoshiyuki Yoshida at UFC 88. Parisyan (18-5) was next in line for a shot at the 170-pound title but a second-round TKO loss to Thiago Alves in April caused Parisyan to lose his first opportunity to win a UFC championship. Yoshida (10-2), the winner of Cage Force’s welterweight tournament, defeated “Ultimate Fighter” veteran Jon Koppenhaver via first-round submission at his UFC debut in May.