A battle of heavyweight strikers has been assembled for the upcoming UFC debut on the Versus network as Cheick Kongo (14-6-1) faces Paul Buentello (27-11) at the The Odeum Colorado in Broomfield on Sunday, March 21.
The UFC confirmed the heavyweight tilt earlier today.
Kongo is undoubtedly hoping to erase the memories of his last performance after Frank Mir submitted him in the first round of their UFC 107 bout. It wasn't the submission that doesn't sit well with the Parisian -- it's the fact that Mir sent him ass over tin cups with a thundering left hand to set up the tap.
It was the second straight loss for the heavy-handed striker, who was positively mauled for three rounds by blue chip prospect Cain Velasquez at UFC 99 last May. It's not unreasonable to think that dropping three straight could bring an end to Kongo's once-promising UFC career.
Yet for Buentello it may only take two.
"The Headhunter" was picked from the rubble that was Affliction MMA after "The Tee-Shirt Guys" imploded under the weight of their own spending (among other things). Following a respectable 3-1 UFC tenure in 2005-06, Buentello returned to the Octagon at "Penn vs. Sanchez" on Dec. 12, dropping a close majority decision to Stefan Struve.
Apparently "Hightower" didn't fear the consequences -- though Buentello might if he's unable to get past Kongo this March. The UFC brass are notoriously unforgiving for 0-2 starts and it bears repeating they already chose not to hold on to him once before.
UFC on Versus 1 is set to feature a fantastic main event between dynamic light heavyweight strikers Brandon "The Truth" Vera and Jon "Bones" Jones. Anthony "Rumble" Johnson, John "Doomsday" Howard, Spencer "The King" Fisher and others are also expected to be in action on what is shaping up to be a great card for the promotion's debut on the cable network.
To check out the latest fight card and rumors for UFC on Versus 1: "Vera vs. Jones" click here.