May 5, 2012; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; Alan Belcher (left) fights Rousimar Palhares in a middleweight bout during UFC on Fox 3 at the Izod Center. Alan Belcher won by technical knock out in the first round. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-US PRESSWIRE
Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) is already sitting pretty with its UFC 155 pay-per-view (PPV), and now the ZUFFA brass has added yet another high-profile fight to its year-end event, scheduled for Dec. 29, 2012 in Las Vegas, Nevada.
MMA Fighting reports that Alan Belcher, who recently had to withdraw from a fight against Vitor Belfort at UFC 153, will be getting a rematch against former UFC middleweight contender, Yushin Okami, who defeated "The Talent" by unanimous decision six years ago.
The fight was pretty uneventful, but it was clear that "Thunder" was simply the better fighter at that point. However, a lot has changed over six years.
Belcher (18-6) has fought 12 times since their first meeting and has recently put together an impressive four-fight winning streak, which has since catapulted him into the top 10. He is known for his great skills standing, but he also boasts a tricky ground game, threatening opponents with some interesting submission attempts.
He is currently coming off of a huge technical knockout victory over Rousimar Palhares at UFC on Fox 3, which even saw him escape one of the Brazilian's feared leg locks. He will be looking to gain another win over a name opponent to propel him further into the middleweight ranks.
Okami (27-7), one fighter among Japan's dwindling crop of legitimate talent, has also done some big things since his first meeting with Belcher. He beat a long list of top talent, eventually earning himself a UFC title shot against Anderson Silva.
That fight didn't go his way, and then his return fight against Tim Boetsch didn't end well, either. Despite winning the exchanges in the latter, Okami was unable to withstand "The Barbarian's" powerful rush in the third round. Recently, "Thunder" defeated the unheralded Buddy Roberts in an anticlimactic finish at UFC 150, and will be looking to make more of an impression with a win over Belcher in December.
Who takes it?