Melvin Guillard vs Thiago Tavares on tap for UFC 101

He's baaaaaaaaaaaaaaack ...

Controversial and star-crossed lightweight Melvin Guillard (21-7-2) will attempt to get back into the cage when he returns against Thiago Tavares (14-3) at UFC 101 in Portland, Ore., on August 8, according to MMAWeekly.com.

The report indicates that bout agreements have been distributed to both fighters; however, nothing is official at this time.

Guillard was rumored to return the Octagon against promotional newcomer Ronys Torres at UFC Fight Night 18 in Nashville, Tenn., on April 1. That fight, however, never materialized. He was also expected to take on Spencer Fisher at UFC 90: "Silva vs. Cote" at the Allstate Arena in Rosemont, Ill., on Oct. 25.

However, the "Young Assassin" was arrested in Houston, Texas, on August 13 of that same year for violating probation on a 2007 drug charge. The enigmatic former contestant on season two of The Ultimate Fighter (TUF) was released to a drug treatment facility per the terms of his recently amended probation.

The talented 25-year-old Louisiana native appeared to have slayed his personal demons, destroying Denis Siver at UFC 86: "Jackson vs. Griffin" in July 2008 — his return fight after being released by the UFC for, among other things, his relationship with illegal drugs.

In fact, Guillard tested positive for cocaine after his loss to Joe Stevenson at UFC Fight Night 9 in Las Vegas, Nevada, in April 2007. He was fined and suspended by the Nevada State Athletic Commission (NSAC) for the transgression.

One has to imagine that he's used up most if not all of his nine lives, meaning that a win is critical for Guillard, but it won't come easy against a Brazilian jiu-jitsu player with talent like Tavares -- Guillard has demonstrated throughout his up-and-down career that he has lackluster submission defense.

After bursting onto the UFC scene with two straight wins, Tavares created quite a buzz — he was being touted as a possible threat to the champion. However, he has since come back down to Earth, losing three of his last five fights.

His last appearance inside the cage was a unanimous decision win over Manny Gamburyan at UFC 94 "St. Pierre vs. Penn 2" on January 31. Putting the final nail in the coffin of Guillard's UFC career would more than likely propel him back into the mix.

Either way, I don't expect this bout to disappoint.

UFC 101 will reportedly feature a main event between former UFC Heavyweight Champion Randy "The Natural" Couture as he locks horns with former UFC Interim Heavyweight Champion Antonio Rodrigo "Minotauro" Nogueira. Thiago Silva and ex-205-pound kingpin Forrest Griffin are also expected to hook 'em up.

For more on UFC 101 click here.

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