Ilir Latifi will make a quick turnaround to face Gian Villante at UFC 196.
Promotion officials announced the light heavyweight contest on Friday. UFC 196 takes place at MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas on March 5 and his headlined by a 155-pound championship clash between Rafael dos Anjos and Conor McGregor. In the co-main event, Holly Holm defends her bantamweight strap against Miesha Tate.
Latifi had a short evening at the office at UFC Fight Night Boston on Jan. 17, as he knocked out Sean O’Connell 30 seconds into the opening stanza. “The Sledgehammer” has won four of his last five Octagon appearances, with all of those triumphs coming inside of a round.
Villante, meanwhile, is coming off a first-round knockout of Anthony Perosh at UFC 193 this past November. The Serra-Longo Fight Team member is 4-3 within the Las Vegas-based promotion, including a third-round TKO of Corey Anderson at UFC on Fox 15.