The Ultimate Fighter (TUF) runner up, Stephan Bonnar, will likely collide with former heavyweight champion, Mark Coleman, in a light heavyweight bout slated for UFC 100 from the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas, Nevada, on July 11.
MMAmania.com has learned that bout agreements have been offered to both fighters but have not yet been signed.
Bonnar recently returned from a catastrophic knee injury while training for a big fight against Matt Hamill in April 2008, which derailed the progress he had made after a suspension for steroids.
In fact, he was on a two-fight win streak, finishing Eric Schafer and Mike Nickels, respectively, establishing himself once again as a dangerous light heavyweight threat. But the long layoff and a very gifted opponent, Jon Jones, ended that streak and happy return at UFC 94 on Jan. 31.
It was a tough pill for "The American Psycho" to swallow -- he was visibly upset after the bout. However, the X-Treme Couture product will look to erase that memory when he locks horns with "The Hammer."
Coleman, too, recently returned from a long break in competition, testing his skills against Mauricio "Shogun" Rua at UFC 93: "Franklin vs. Henderson" on Jan. 17. He ended up on the wrong end of a third round technical knockout, which he felt was an unjust stoppage, in his first fight inside the Octagon since 1999.
The UFC Hall of Famer earned $40,000 for putting on a "Fight of the Night"-caliber performance; however, most onlookers did not feel it was worthy of such an honor. That’s because Coleman and Rua appeared to tire early in the first round and turned in sloppy performances because of their exhaustion.
Hopefully, he will use that extra bonus money to ensure that he is prepared 100 percent this time around.
Coleman — the first-ever UFC heavyweight champion and most recent inductee into the promotion’s hall of fame — had a semi-successful run in the Pride FC organization, with the highlight of his work overseas being the champion of the first-ever open weight grand prix in 2000.
Since that time, however, the 43-year-old former collegiate national wrestling champion for THE Ohio State University has compiled an average record (4-5), taking on some of the best competitors in the division such as Fedor Emelianenko (two losses), Mirko Cro Cop (loss) and Antonio Rodrigo "Minotauro" Nogueira (loss).
It’s doesn’t get any easier with Bonnar.
UFC 100 features two major title fights: Brock Lesnar and Frank Mir will tangle to declare an undisputed division champion and Georges St. Pierre will once again defend his 170-pound strap against number one contender, Thiago Alves. TUF 9 coaches, Dan Henderson and Michael Bisping, are also slated to meet and determine who earns the right to challenge the reigning middleweight champion later in 2009.
For the latest UFC 100 fight card and rumors click here.