Former lightweight champion and division stalwart, Sean Sherk, has been tapped to diffuse the meteoric rise of Evan Dunham at UFC 119, which is tentatively scheduled to take place at Conseco in Indianapolis, Indiana, on Sept. 25.
The potential 155-pound showdown between the 36-year-old veteran and 26-year-old up-and-comer was today confirmed by MMAWeekly.com.
Sherk has not competed in more than a year, sustaining several different injuries that have forced him out of three separate fights. In fact, bouts against top division players such as Clay Guida, Gleison Tibau and Jim Miller have all been scrapped, delaying perhaps his final run at another title opportunity.
In his most recent performance, "The Muscle Shark" dropped a unanimous decision to Frankie Edgar -- who has since gone one to become lightweight champion -- at UFC 98: "Evans vs. Machida" in back in May 2009. His decision to abandon his roots (wrestling) in that fight in favor of a new stand-up attack was a big factor in the loss.
He'll need to relocate his identity if he plans to pass his upcoming test against an incredibly resilient and hungry opponent.
Dunham is on a four-fight tear since making his Octagon debut early last year, taking out Per Eklund, Marcus Aurelio, Efrain Escudero and Tyson Griffin. It was his gutsy win over Griffin, however, which made most fans stand up and take notice.
And if he can add Sherk to his hit list, keeping his perfect record (11-0) intact and winning five straight UFC fights, you can expect to see Dunham mixing it up with more of the top contenders in the division in the months and years to come.
He's got quite an unassuming upside.
UFC 119, which has yet to be officially announced by the promotion, is still awaiting a potential main event. Stay tuned to MMAmania.com for more information on this developing fight card as it becomes available.