Michael Bisping is looking to start his first winning streak since 2011. | Photo: Dave Mandel/Sherdog.com
Middleweights Michael Bisping and Thales Leites will headline the Ultimate Fighting Championship’s inaugural visit to Scotland this summer.
UFC’s U.K. branch on Monday announced that Bisping and Leites are set to square off July 18 at the SSE Hydro Arena in Glasgow. Also confirmed for the UFC Fight Night “Bisping vs. LeitesUFC Fight Night card, which is expected to be broadcast on Fox Sports 1 and UFC Fight Pass, was a lightweight co-main event between Ross Pearson and Evan Dunham.
Bisping, 36, continues to chase the middleweight title shot which has thus far eluded him during his nine-year UFC career. “The Count” has alternated wins and losses in his last nine outings but most recently prevailed over C.B. Dollaway via unanimous decision on April 25. The bout with Leites will mark the Englishman’s ninth time headlining a UFC event.
Once released by the UFC, 33-year-old Leites has clawed his way back to becoming a top-10 middleweight with five straight wins since rejoining the company two years ago. The Brazilian jiu-jitsu black belt is currently on a three-fight finishing streak, having scored knockouts of Francis Carmont and Trevor Smith before most recently putting Tim Boetsch to sleep with an arm-triangle choke at UFC 183.
Pearson, 30, was last seen in a sterling performance at UFC 185, where he recorded a second-round knockout of Sam Stout. Since returning to the lightweight division in 2012 after a brief run at featherweight, “The Real Deal” has gone 4-2 with one no-contest.
Dunham got back on track at UFC 182 in January with a unanimous decision win against Rodrigo Damm. The victory snapped a three-fight losing skid for the 33-year-old Oregon native, who is 8-6 overall in his Octagon career.