Last week Cheick Kongo was rumored to have been offered a bout with Roy Nelson. However once Roy Nelson confirmed the bout himself via twitter the UFC quickly shot the possibility down and said they had other plans for Kongo.
Now, the rumor floating around is that Kongo will now face fellow striker Mark Hunt at UFC 144 in Japan. After going two-years without a loss, Kongo was hoping for a rematch with Velasquez or at least a contender in the heavyweight division, however, if this rumor holds true than he has apparently not gotten what he has wished for and instead is taking a step backwards in competition.
“UFC 144: Japan”, while not yet made official by the promotion, is expected to go down on February 26 live from the Saitama Super Arena in Saitama, Japan. As of current date, the event is expected to be headlined by a lightweight title fight between champion Frankie Edgar and challenger Benson Henderson.
Kongo has not tasted defeat since 2009 and is riding high on a five fight unbeaten streak. Having most recently fought and beaten Matt Mitrione at UFC 137, he is looking to fight whoever will get him back in contention for the UFC’s heavyweight title.
If rumor holds true, Kongo’s next foe will be Mark Hunt. Since losing his UFC debut to Sean McCorkle via decision, Hunt has been able to bounce back from defeat and string to consecutive wins together. He last saw action at UFC 135 this past September where he was able to outpoint Ben Rothwell in route to a decision victory.
If this bout gets confirmed as official we will update this report, however for now I am keeping it in rumor status due to the nature of the supposed booking.