Sources close to the match-up confirmed the bout to MMAWeekly.com on Tuesday.
Rafael ‘Sapo’ Natal (13-3-1) returns at UFC 143 looking for her second win in a row after picking up his first victory in the Octagon at UFC 133 in August.
Defeating Paul Bradley in Philadelphia, Natal got back on the winning track after starting his UFC career 0-1-1 in his first two fights. Natal trains out of Renzo Gracie’s Manhattan academy alongside several other top fighters including UFC lightweight champion Frankie Edgar and former UFC heavyweight Rolles Gracie.
Facing Natal in his UFC debut will be undefeated prospect Michael Kuiper, who comes in with a perfect 11-0 record thus far in his MMA career.
Fighting out of Holland, Kuiper has been devastating so far in his career, winning 10 of his 11 fights by stoppage with a mix of both knockouts and submissions.
The middleweight bout will be added to the UFC 143 undercard set for Feb 4 in Las Vegas.