Jon Fitch gets his crack at the WSOF welterweight crown in July. | Keith Mills/Sherdog.com
The World Series of Fighting did not wait long to line up an opponent for Rousimar Palhares’ first 170-pound title defense.
Shortly after Palhares submitted Steve Carl at WSOF 9 to capture the welterweight crown, the promotion announced that “Toquinho” will square off with Jon Fitch at WSOF 11 in July. A date and a venue have yet to be announced for the event, which will also include a lightweight title clash between Justin Gaethje and Nick Newell. Additionally, Tyrone Spong is expected to compete on the card, although an opponent was not announced for the decorated kickboxer.
Prior to his WSOF debut, Palhares posted an 8-4 record in the UFC. He was released by the Las Vegas-based promotion after failing to release a heel hook applied to Mike Pierce at UFC Fight Night 29. In addition to being banned from the Octagon, Palhares was suspended for 120 days by the Brazilian MMA Athletic Commission (CABMMA).
Fitch, meanwhile, was released by the UFC following a loss to Demian Maia at UFC 156. The American Kickboxing Academy product won 13 of his first 14 bouts in the Octagon, falling only to Georges St. Pierre in a welterweight title bout at UFC 87. Fitch would win just once in his final four UFC appearances, however. He was submitted by Josh Burkman in his initial WSOF foray before taking a split verdict over Marcelo Alfaya in his most recent outing at WSOF 6.