It’ll be nine months later when fight time rolls around, but Tito Ortiz and Antonio Rogerio Nogueira are finally slated to meet in the Octagon. The two have verbally agreed to fight at UFC 140 on Dec. 10 in when the promotion returns to Toronto.
UFC officials announced the bout Friday evening.
Ortiz and Nogueira were originally slated to meet at UFC Fight Night 24 in March, but a cut above his eye and a concussion from training knocked Ortiz out of the fight. Nogueira went on to fight Phil Davis instead, losing a three-round decision.
Ortiz’s (16-9-1) career was on the brink of extinction prior to the planned fight at UFC Fight Night 24, and again when he was finally rescheduled to face Ryan Bader at UFC 132 in July. UFC president Dana White warned that Ortiz was at his most dangerous when backed into a corner, and Ortiz proved him right. He submitted Bader inside the opening two minutes of the fight.
Striking while the iron was hot, Ortiz stepped up in place of an injured Phil Davis to save the UFC 133 main event just a month later. He wound up losing a second-round decision to Rashad Evans, but his willingness to step up earned some bonus points with the UFC brass.
Nogueira (19-5) was expecting to return to the Octagon at UFC 133 to face Rich Franklin, but had to withdraw due to a shoulder injury. The fight with Ortiz will be the Brazilian’s first since the loss to Davis in March.
The focus is obviously on the UFC 140 fight card right now. A lightweight bout between Dennis Hallman and John Makdessi was announced earlier in the day on Friday, which followed a heavyweight bout between former champions Frank Mir and Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira, Rogerio’s older brother, announced earlier in the week.