Onetime UFC heavyweight prospect Todd Duffee
will return to the Octagon at
, stepping in for Matt
to face British grappler Philip De
The Las Vegas Sun first reported the news, and
UFC officials confirmed the booking shortly thereafter.
Mitrione was pulled from his bout with De Fries earlier this week
to fill in for an injured Shane
Carwin against Roy Nelson on
Dec. 15 at “The Ultimate Fighter” Season 16 finale.
UFC 155 takes place Dec. 29 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las
Vegas and will see Junior dos
Santos defend his heavyweight title against former champion
Velasquez in the evening’s main event.
Duffee, 26, joined the UFC in 2009 and made a splash in his debut,
leveling Tim Hague in
just seven seconds at UFC 102. The hulking prospect then made his
sophomore effort in May 2010, falling victim to an experienced
Russow, who weathered two rounds of sustained offense from
Duffee before knocking the young gun stiff midway through the third
frame at UFC 114.
Released from the promotion shortly after the loss, Duffee was then
blitzed by Alistair
Overeem on New Year’s Eve to close out 2010. After spending 15
months on the sideline, Duffee returned to the cage this past April
under India’s Super Fight League banner, earning a technical
knockout over ex-Bellator talent Neil Grove at
De Fries, meanwhile, has competed three times in the Octagon since
joining the Las Vegas-based organization just over one year ago.
The 26-year-old earned a unanimous decision over countryman
Broughton in his UFC foray last winter but was then leveled by
a series of Stipe
Miocic right hands this past February at UFC on Fuel TV 1. Most
recently, De Fries earned his second promotional victory by topping
former strongman Oli
Thompson, submitting his fellow Brit in the second round of
their UFC on Fox 4 clash on Aug. 4.
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