Brian Stann and Wanderlei Silva have been officially paired up for the UFC 130 pay-per-view event on May 28 from the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada, according to the promotion's popular "Ultimate Insider" webcast.
Stann punched his ticket (literally) for bigger and better things in the busy 185-pound division with a first round technical knockout over the resurgent Chris Leben at UFC 125: "Resolution" just last month.
Leben, who campaigned for a fight against "The Axe Murderer" ever since his thrilling back-to-back wins over Aaron Simpson and Yoshihiro Akiyama in 2009, was called to duty for a UFC 125 battle against the super-soldier while the Brazilian recovered from his surgically repaired knee and broken ribs.
In fact, it was that injury that forced Wandy out of his July 3 bout against "Sexyama," giving Leben the chance to replace him and put on one of the year's best fights, putting him in a position to seek out the former PRIDE smashing machine.
Unfortunately the "All American" didn't stick to the script, stopping "The Crippler" in the first round back on Jan. 1 and inserting himself into the Silva lottery.
Prior to withdrawing from the "Lesnar vs. Carwin" pay-per-view event, Silva outpointed Michael Bisping at UFC 110 in Sydney, Australia, snapping a two-fight skid to bring his record to 2-3 inside the Octagon and 33-10-1 overall.
While always entertaining, one has to wonder how much the Brazilian has left at this stage of his storied career.
The opposite could be said for the resurgent Stann (10-3), who seems to have replicated his WEC success since dropping to middleweight after spending most of his career at 205-pounds.
In addition to his make-or-break win over Leben, the hard-hitting Marine finished Mike Massenzio via triangle choke at UFC on Versus 2 last August.
Does a convincing win over Silva put him in the 185-pound title hunt?
Former UFC Light Heavyweight Champion Quinton "Rampage" Jackson will also be in action against Thiago Silva while Roy Nelson tries to keep pace in the heavyweight division against former champion Frank Mir.
Stay tuned to MMAmania.com for more details on this still-developing fight card.