Evan Tanner will face Marvin Eastman at UFC 76 in September. The fight is expected to be televised.
Tanner was one of the first fighters added to the UFC 76 card earlier this year but remained opponent-less for some time as some speculated he may not fight at the event at all. After a bout between Eastman and Drew McFedries at UFC 77 was scrapped it appears the former UFC Middleweight Champion will now face “The Beastman”.
With a 32-6 MMA record Tanner has extensive experience and will be a very solid addition to the UFC’s weak middleweight division. With a rematch between current Middleweight Champion Anderson Silva and former champion Rich Franklin looming the UFC needs another top contender and fast and Tanner may just fit the bill. Early in his career Tanner defeated Heath herring to win the Uniter Shoot Wrestling Federation’s Heavyweight Title. He successfully defended the title 7 times and after 3 UFC winsearned a shot at the UFC Light Heavyweight Championship. Although he was defeated by Tito Ortiz in the championship bout he remained in the UFC winning 6 of his next 7 UFC fights to earn a shot at the middleweight title. He defeated David Terrell at UFC 51 to win the middleweight title but lost it to Rich Franlin in his first attempted title defense. In April 2006 Tanner defeated Justin Levens by submission but has not fought since.
Eastman first fought in the UFC in 2003 losing to. Another loss to Travs Lutter in 2004 sent Eastman packing. After fighting extensively outside of the UFC he made his return at UFC 67 where he was defeated by Quinton â€œRampageâ€? Jackson in the second round by KO. Following the loss Eastman headlined an International Fighting Organization event which he won by unanimous decision. A loss in his fight against Tanner would likely force Eastman out of the UFC permanantly barring a string of strong victories.