Less than 24 hours after announcing the addition of Rich Franklin vs. Cung Le at UFC 148, UFC officials on Monday confirmed to MMAWeekly.com that Michael Bisping would face Tim Boetsch on the July 7 event in Las Vegas, as well. The bout has been verbally agreed upon.
Bisping (22-4) is coming off of a strong showing, albeit in a loss, against Chael Sonnen at UFC on Fox 2 in January. That fight ended a four-fight winning streak for Bisping, but more importantly, it put his title shot aspirations on hold.
Sonnen is expected to face UFC middleweight champion Anderson Silva in June of this year, while Bisping will square off with Boetsch, trying to work his way back to the front of the queue.
Following a loss to Phil Davis at light heavyweight, Boetsch (15-4) made the move to middleweight and has been streaking towards a title shot ever since.
He is currently 3-0 at 185 pounds, most recently staging an amazing come from behind victory over Yushin Okami at UFC 144 in Japan. Badly beaten in the first two rounds of the fight, Boetsch launched a blistering flurry of strikes in the opening moments of the third round for a TKO stoppage of Okami. He’ll hope to do the same to Bisping, albeit hoping to avoid the punishing first two rounds.
TUF: Live coaches Dominick Cruz and Urijah Faber headline UFC 148 with Cruz’s UFC bantamweight championship on the line. UFC 148 takes place on July 7 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas.