Former Strikeforce middleweight champion Ronaldo “Jacare” Souza has decided the light heavyweight division is not for him. After losing a controversial and frankly forgettable decision to Jan Blachowicz in his light heavyweight debut this fall, Jacare has elected to return to his native middleweight division.
The Brazilian is now scheduled to meet Uriah Hall in a middleweight bout at UFC 249, which is scheduled for April 18 in Brooklyn, New York. ESPN, the official broadcast partner of the UFC, was first to report this matchup. MMA Fighting subsequently confirmed that report.
Prior to his light heavyweight loss to Blachowicz, Jacare came up short in a middleweight bout with Jack Hermansson, losing a decision in a noteworthy upset. Prior to that, he picked up a knockout victory over former UFC middleweight champion Chris Weidman. The 40-year-old is currently 26-8-1 (1 NC) in MMA.
Hall, meanwhile, holds an overall record of 15-9 in MMA. The 35-year-old, who rose to prominence with some highlight reel wins on The Ultimate Fighter, is riding two-straight victories over Bevon Lewis and Antônio Carlos Júnior — a knockout and a split decision respectively.
In addition to this Jacare vs. Hall fight, UFC 249 will feature a lightweight title fight between champion Khabib Nurmagomedov and challenger Tony Ferguson, which will serve as the main event. The pair have been scheduled to fight four times previously to no avail, and their scheduled collision is viewed as one of the best lightweight matchups ever.
Khabib Nurmagomedov is currently a flawless 28-0 as a professional fighter—easily the most impressive undefeated record in the sport at present. Highlights of his resume include recent victories over top-flight opposition such as Dustin Poirier, Conor McGregor, Al Iaquinta, Edson Barboza, Michael Johnson and Rafael dos Anjos.
Tony Ferguson, on the other hand, will enter his fight with with Nurmagomedov on a 12-fight win-streak, and is widely regarded as the champ’s toughest challenge to date. Highlights of his recent career include decisive victories over the likes of Donald “Cowboy” Cerrone, Anthony Pettis, Kevin Lee, Rafael dos Anjos and Edson Barboza.
What do you think of this newly announced Jacare vs. Uriah Hall fight?
This article first appeared on BJPENN.com on 12/26/2019.