John Lineker, one of the UFC bantamweight division’s most exciting contenders, is now scheduled for a return to the cage. According to a report from Combate, which was subsequently confirmed by MMAFighting.com, Lineker will make his return at UFC Fight Night 119 this October 28 in Sao Paulo, Brazil. His opponent will be Ecuador’s Marlon “Chito” Vera.
This will be Lineker’s first fight in nearly a year, as his last steps into the cage occurred in December of 2016, when he came up short in a bantamweight scrap with former champion TJ Dillashaw. This loss to Dillashaw was preceded by four-straight wins in the bantamweight division, as he submitted Francisco Rivera, defeated Rob Font by decision, knocked out Michael MacDonald, and defeated John Dodson by decision. The Brazilian bantamweight knockout artist is 29-8 overall.
Vera, meanwhile, is 10-3-1 in sum. In his last fight, he picked up a first-round armbar win over Brian Kelleher. His next most recent win saw him defeat the retiring Brad Pickett with a third-round head-kick and a volley of followup strikes. This win was preceded by a decision defeat of Ning Guangyou, and a decision loss to Davey Grant.
UFC Fight Night 119 will be headlined by a middleweight scrap between dangerous contender Derek Brunson and former UFC light heavyweight champion Lyoto Machida. The original co-headliner was expected to pit Misha Cirkunov against Glover Teixeira at light heavyweight, however, this fight was moved to UFC on Fox 26. The new co-headliner is believed to be a welterweight bout between recent title challenger Demian Maia and red-hot contender Colby Covington.
Do you think John Lineker will return to winning ways against Chito Vera, or will it be another loss in the book for “Hands of Stone” in Sao Paulo? Join the conversation in the comments section!
This article first appeared on BJPenn.com on 9/19/2017.