Erik Koch Moves Up to Lightweight, Meets Rafaello Oliveira at UFC 170

January 4, 2014
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Erik Koch goes high on Francisco Rivera at WEC 52

When most fighters tend to drop weight classes, UFC featherweight Erik Koch is moving up a weight class to face Rafaello Oliveira at 155 pounds at UFC 170 on Feb. 22 in Las Vegas.

UFC officials announced the bout on Saturday.

After winning four straight and on the precipice of the featherweight title picture, Koch (13-3) lost his last two fights at 145 pounds to Ricardo Lamas and Dustin Poirier. So he’s now headed to lightweight to try and right the ship against another fighter in desperate need of a victory.

Oliveira (15-6) is in the midst of his second run in the UFC. Going 1-2 during his first UFC stint, the Brazilian fighter is 1-3 during his recent UFC tenure. He is coming off of a loss to Edson Barboza, and has little wiggle room in fighting Koch if he is to remain on the roster.

UFC 170 features a women’s bantamweight title fight between champion Ronda Rousey and challenger Sara McMann. The co-main event pits Daniel Cormier against Rashad Evans in a light heavyweight contest.

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  • Johnny Eagle

    Isn’t he already undersized at his current weight?
    He seems like a very talented guy, but Dustin Porier just overpowered him in their last fight.

    Strange move, what am I missing?

    • shakejunt

      we’re all on the same page. not sure why the move up, but perhaps his weightcut is too miserable and he feels like he can find success at lw.

  • lucien

    My guess is that the weight cut is too much for him and is leaving him too weak for the fight.