The heavyweight bout will mark "The Warmaster's" first fight in "Sin City" since he was popped for banned substances after his win over Randy Couture at UFC 36 back in 2002. That was the second straight time Barnett pissed hot, as his UFC 34 post-fight drug test provided a positive result, as well.
But that was then and this is now and Josh has been flying straight, and the Anti World Doping Agency (WADA), is making sure of it.
Still, Barnett is excited to head back to the site where he won the UFC's heavyweight title a decade ago, even if he's had to deal with strict guidelines from the Nevada State Athletic Commission (NSAC) as he previously told MMA TKO:
"It's nice to be back and fighting in the same arena that I won the title in back in 2002. Vegas is a great fight city and it's very easy for all my friends and family to be able to come out and make it to the fight. Sure, it's stressful when new things pop onto your lap (NSAC guidelines) and you have to deal with this, and deal with this, and deal with this. But, everybody was professional and went through actually better than one can expect."
As far as receiving forgiveness from MMA fans for his past transgressions, Barnett says he believes some fans can be forgiving while others are just "assholes" who try to knock other people down for their past sins.
"I don't consider MMA fans any different from any other fans. I think fans in general, in this day and age; there are plenty that are forgiving, I imagine. Then there are plenty that are total assholes and all they want to do is sit back from a high chair and try to make themselves feel better in some way by trying to knock somebody else down. That goes for fans of anybody in entertainment, MMA, basketball, football; all of that is considered entertainment. It's a real melting pot and everything is included and you have to deal with all of it. But, as long as those guys and gals want to spread negativity and throw out the old ether, if they're spelling my name right, they are continuing to propagate me and what I do. They clearly have interest even if it's for a negative reason."
According to Barnett, he's already been tested at least eight times by WADA ahead of his showdown against "Hapa."
Josh received forgiveness from UFC President Dana White -- though there isn't an apology on record from either side -- after the two butted heads over the years which put Josh's return to the Octagon in jeopardy.
That, or they were at least able to come to a mutual understanding on a fight contract.
And now that he's back home, Barnett plans to make the best of his time inside the eight-walled cage as he aims for his second straight win since re-signing with the ZUFFA-owned company.
Let's hear it Maniacs, have you forgiven Josh Barnett?