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UFC 79: Rameau Thierry Sokoudjou not booked to fight Lyoto Machida ... yet (Exclusive)

Rameau Thierry Sokoudjou -- who burst onto the scene with impressive wins over top light heavyweights such as Ricardo Arona and Antonio Rogerio Nogueira under the PRIDE FC banner -- is not confirmed to fight Lyoto Machida at UFC 79: "Nemesis" on December 29.

The rumor mill has heated up since our earlier post in which we passed along remarks from the "African Assassin" intimating that he might make his Octagon debut on New Year's Eve weekend in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Not the case, according to Team Quest officials in Murrieta, Calif. However, the bout is "in the works."

According to our reliable source, no bout agreements have been signed despite indications that both sides are very close to hammering out a deal. "These things fall through all the time," he warns.

It's important to note that at press time Sokoudjou hasn't even been signed to a UFC contract.

He has made a decision, however, to fight for the UFC. Other offers from EliteXC and K-1 were "flaky." In addition, the Team Quest management team feels that his best long-term interests will be served fighting in the United States.

The UFC debut of the powerful 205-pound prospect seems as if it is only a matter of time. At the very least -- even if he doesn't fight Machida at UFC 79 -- it looks like Sokoudjou is Octagon bound.


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