At UFC 231, which goes down on December 8 in Toronto, Iceland’s Gunnar Nelson will make his long-awaited return to the Octagon opposite Brazil’s Alex “Cowboy” Oliveira. While Nelson has previously looked a little undersized for the welterweight division, it doesn’t look like that will be a problem anymore.
Early on Saturday morning, Gunnar Nelson shared a photo of himself on Twitter, and to say he looks absolutely jacked would be an understatement. This is easily the biggest he’s ever looked.
— Gunnar Nelson (@GunniNelson) December 1, 2018
Gunnar Nelson has not fought in well over a year. His last fight occurred in July of 2017, when he was knocked out by streaking Argentine contender Santiago Ponzinibbio — though he sustained an eye-poke moments before the fight-ending blow, which caused this outcome of this fight to be a bit controversial. Nonetheless, it appears he’s been training hard in his time away from the cage.
Prior to his loss to Ponzinibbio, Nelson was on a two-fight win streak composed of a submission defeat of Alan Jouban and a submission defeat of Albert Tumenov. He’s currently 16-3-1 overall.
Oliveira, on the other hand, will enter this fight with Gunnar Nelson with a 19-5-1 overall record. He’s currently on a two-fight win streak, having recently bested Carlo Pedersoli Jr. by TKO, and former UFC interim welterweight champ Carlos Condit by submission. His last loss occurred in December of 2017 when he was knocked out Yancy Medeiros in a Fight of the Year contender.
UFC 231 will be headlined by a featherweight title fight between champ Max Holloway and undefeated challenger Brian Ortega. It will also feature a compelling flyweight showdown between former strawweight champ Joanna Jedrzejczyk and top contender Valentina Shevchenko, which will be for the vacant title in the division.
How do you think Gunnar Nelson will perform in his long-awaited return to the cage at UFC 231?
This article first appeared on BJPENN.COM on 11/30/2018.