Krzysztof Soszynski has been tapped to face Brandon Vera in a light heavyweight bout at UFC 102 from the Rose Garden in Portland, Oregon, after a knee injury has forced Matt Hamill to withdraw from the upcoming event on August 29, according to Sherdog.com.
The Ultimate Fighter (TUF) 8 semifinalist is no stranger to last minute call-ups. Soszynski replaced an injured Houston Alexander against Andre Gusmao at UFC 98 back on May 23, knocking out the IFL vet in the first round.
"The Polish Experiment" made his homecoming at UFC 97 from the Bell Centre in Montreal, Canada, on April 18, defeating former WEC 205-pound champion Brian "All American" Stann via first round submission — his third straight finish by Kimura.
Soszynski (18-8-1) trains under Dan Henderson in Temecula, Calif., along with training partner Rameau Thierry Sokoudjou. He has a strong wrestling base, powerful strikes and solid submission skills to boot.
Vera (10-3) is a former heavyweight fighter who was considered a possible title contender until sustaining back-to-back losses to Tim Sylvia and Fabricio Werdum. He recently beat Mike Patt into submission with leg kicks to score a second round technical knockout at UFC 96: "Jackson vs. Jardine" earlier this year.
It was the second win in three attempts for "The Truth" at 205 pounds -– he has a unanimous decision win over Reese Andy at UFC Fight Night 14 and lackluster split decision loss to Keith Jardine at UFC 89: "Bisping vs. Leben" to his credit.
Vera has re-dedicated himself to training and vows to do nothing but kick people’s asses from this point forward to re-establish himself as a top fighter in 2009. He’s off to a good start; however, he’ll have to figure out a way to keep that momentum going against the surging Soszynski.
UFC 102 will feature a main event between Randy "The Natural" Couture (16-9) locking horns with Antonio Rodrigo "Minotauro" Nogueira (31-5-1) in a dream match-up that most fans expected to see before Brock Lesnar and Frank Mir played spoiler roles in the opening round of the mini heavyweight tournament created in late 2008 to crown an undisputed division champion.
Also slated for the main card is perennial light heavyweight contender Keith Jardine (14-5-1) who has been tapped to replace Forrest Griffin in a 205-pound slugfest against hard-hitting Brazilian import Thiago Silva (13-1).
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