SYDNEY AUSTRALIA - DECEMBER 14: Jon Fitch speaks to the media during a UFC 127 Press Conference at Star City on December 14 2010 in Sydney Australia. (Photo by Mark Nolan/Getty Images)
Jon Fitch will reportedly make his return to the Octagon after a long rehabilitation from shoulder surgery to square off against top welterweight prospect Johny Hendricks at UFC 141 on Dec. 30 in Las Vegas, Nevada.
ESPN.com brought word of the pending contest a short time ago.
Fitch has been riding the pine since a closely contested bout with "The Prodigy" resulted in an unsatisfying draw back on Feb. 27 at UFC 127. A bum shoulder forced him out of action for months, during which he spent most of his time on Twitter baiting Penn and UFC in the hopes of earning an immediate rematch.
It didn't work, though, and Penn is set to get busy with Nick Diaz in October. That left very few 170-pound dance partners and ultimately led to this match-up with Hendricks. Hey, at least he's on a Brock Lesnar headlined pay-per-view.
Johny Hendricks, American wild man and amateur wrestler, may not have the notoriety Fitch is looking for in his opponents but he most certainly presents an interesting match-up.
He's 11-1 in his short but sweet professional mixed martial arts career, and at just 28-years-old, he's entering his prime and ready to make a splash in the world's largest fight promotion.
If he can beat Fitch, he'll enter the upper echelon of the division.
UFC 141 will take place on a Friday, this coming Dec. 30, 2011, at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada. The event will be headlined by a mega-fight pitting former heavyweight champion Brock Lesnar taking on former Strikeforce heavyweight champion Alistair Overeem.
Stay tuned to MMAmania.com for more on this still-developing fight card.