by Ken Pishna – MMAWeekly.com
Nathan Marquardt will fight Thales Leites on June 7 at UFC 85 in London. MMAWeekly.com confirmed the bout with sources close to both camps, while GracieMag.com also reported that Leites confirmed the bout to them.
The two were last scheduled to fight at UFC 81 on Feb. 2 in Las Vegas, but Leites was forced to withdraw from the bout due to a hand injury. He underwent surgery to repair a break in his right hand and has been out of action for the past two months.
Marquardt instead faced Ultimate Fighting Championship and Pride Fighting Championships veteran Jeremy Horn at UFC 81, submitting him with a guillotine choke early in the second round.
Leites last competed at UFC 74 last August, submitting Ryan Jensen via armbar late in the first round.
Although Marquardt lost his title bid against Anderson Silva in July of last year, the winner of this bout will likely be considered one of the top contenders for the middleweight championship.
UFC 85 is headlined by a light heavyweight contenders’ bout between former champion Chuck Liddell and Ultimate Fighter season two winner Rashad Evans, who is a replacement for the injured Mauricio “Shogun” Rua.
UFC 85 bouts (officially announced):
-Chuck Liddell vs. Rashad Evans
-Fabricio Werdum vs. Brandon Vera
UFC 85 bouts (unannounced):
-Martin Kampmann vs. Jorge Rivera
-Ryo Chonan vs. Roan Carneiro
-Marcus Davis vs. TBA