The Ultimate Fighting Championship has moved quickly in finding a new opponent for Mauricio Rua at UFC Fight Night Hamburg.
Anthony Smith will step in for Volkan Oezdemir and face “Shogun” at the July 22 event. Multiple outlets have confirmed the new UFC Fight Night 134 headliner following an initial report from ESPN. Oezdemir was transported to UFC 227 to face Alexander Gustafsson in a featured light heavyweight bout in Los Angeles on Aug. 4.
UFC Fight Night 134 takes place at Barclaycard Arena in Hamburg, Germany and will also feature a pivotal light heavyweight matchup between Ilir Latifi and Glover Teixeira in the co-main event. The card will air in its entirety on Fox Sports 1.
Smith has been victorious in four of his last five Octagon appearances. Most recently, “Lionheart” scored a 53-second knockout of Rashad Evans at UFC 225 on June 9. The Omaha, Neb., native owns a 29-13 career mark that includes 26 triumphs inside the distance.
Rua, a former 205-pound champion, has enjoyed a brief resurgence of late. The 36-year-old Brazilian has fought once per year since 2015, compiling a three-bout winning streak that includes triumphs over Antonio Rogerio Nogueira, Corey Anderson and Gian Villante.