A new published report indicates that an intriguing matchup between former UFC middleweight champion Rich Franklin and former PRIDE middleweight (205 lbs.) champion Wanderlei Silva is set to take place at UFC 99 during the UFC’s inaugural event in Germany on June 13 in Cologne at the Lanxess Arena.
The news was first reported by MMAWeekly.com, which cites multiple independent sources as having confirmed the bout.
MMA Weekly also adds that the fight could take place at catchweight of 195 pounds. The reasons for why the bout could be contested at catchweight has to do with the fact that Silva has flirted with the idea of dropping to middleweight while Franklin has fought most recently at 205 pounds.
Silva finds himself at a true crossroads in his career having lost four out his last five fights. His most recent loss took place at UFC 92 this past December, where he was knocked out in the first round against Quinton “Rampage” Jackson.
Prior to the defeat against Jackson, Silva had recorded a 36-second knockout over Keith Jardine at UFC 84 this past May. However, his three previous fights were losses to Mirko Cro Cop, Dan Henderson, and Chuck Liddell.
Franklin will also be looking to return to his winning ways following a split decision loss last month against Henderson during UFC 93. Despite the fighters’ storied histories as middleweight, the fight was contested at light heavyweight. Franklin’s previous fight took that place at UFC 88 this past December was also fought at 205 pounds. Facing season three veteran of The Ultimate Fighter Matt Hamill, Franklin recorded a third round TKO.
In addition to Silva vs. Franklin, a lightweight bout between Caol Uno and Spencer Fisher is also reportedly scheduled for UFC 99.