Prater, Funch Return to Provide Injury Relief at UFC 142

By Mike Whitman Dec 17, 2011
Welterweights Ricardo Funch and Carlo Prater have answered the call to compete at UFC 142, stepping up as injury replacements for the sidelined Paulo Thiago and Siyar Bahadurzada.

Promotion officials announced the news on Saturday, also confirming Gabriel Gonzaga’s participation in the event as a replacement for the injured Rob Broughton. Funch will meet veteran Mike Pyle, while Prater (Pictured) is slated to face Jungle Fight champion Erick Silva.

Headlined by a featherweight title confrontation between champion Jose Aldo and challenger Chad Mendes, the Jan. 14 event will emanate from HSBC Arena in Rio de Janeiro. Scheduled to air live on pay-per-view in the United States, the event will also showcase a middleweight matchup between Vitor Belfort and Anthony Johnson in the co-headliner.

A two-time UFC veteran, Funch will make his Octagon return after more than a year away from the world’s largest MMA promotion. Following back-to-back UFC defeats at the hands of Johny Hendricks in December 2009 and Claude Patrick in June of the following year, Funch took an extended break from competition before returning to the cage earlier this month to best Ryan Quinn by unanimous decision.

Prater has won four straight fights heading into his UFC debut. A onetime WEC title challenger and nine-year veteran of the sport, Prater has been perfect in 2011, notching wins over Bryan Travers, Henrique Mello, Cameron Dollar and Gleristone Santos. “Neo” has only been knocked out once as a professional and owns notable career victories over Pat Healy, Spencer Fisher, Melvin Guillard and Carlos Condit.

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