Junior dos Santos will face another striker in his next Octagon outing. | Photo: Dave Mandel/Sherdog.com
A matchup of top-10 heavyweights has been added to the Ultimate Fighting Championship’s next network-televised fight card, as the organization Tuesday announced that Junior dos Santos and Alistair Overeem will clash at UFC on Fox 17.
The scheduled three-round bout will serve as co-headliner for the Dec. 19 event at Amway Center in Orlando, Florida. Topping the card is a UFC lightweight championship bout between newly crowned champion Rafael dos Anjos and three-time World Extreme Cagefighting title challenger Donald Cerrone.
Dos Santos and Overeem have been scheduled to meet twice before. In 2012, after defeating Brock Lesnar, Overeem was slated to challenge then-champion dos Santos at UFC 146. That title shot was revoked when Overeem failed a pre-fight drug test due to elevated testosterone levels. The match was set again for UFC 160 in May 2013, but an injury forced Overeem to withdraw from the engagement.
Currently positioned at No. 3 in the Sherdog.com heavyweight rankings, 31-year-old dos Santos holds an 11-2 record inside the Octagon, with both losses coming in title fights courtesy of former champ Cain Velasquez. The hard-hitting Brazilian was last seen in December, when he went toe-to-toe with Stipe Miocic to claim a unanimous decision in a bruising five-rounder.
Overeem, 35, is currently riding the first winning streak of his UFC career thanks to decisive victories over Stefan Struve and Roy Nelson.