After making a big splash in his UFC debut earlier this month, Brian Melancon isn't wasting any time returning to the Octagon.
Melancon, who finished Seth Baczynski in the first round of their UFC 162 preliminary card bout, has agreed to replace the injured Brazilian Paulo Thiago at next month's UFC Fight Night: Condit vs. Kampmann 2 event. Melancon will face Kelvin Gastelum in The Ultimate Fighter 17 winner first post-TUF booking with the promotion.
The news was first reported on the latest edition of UFC Tonight.
Earlier this month, Melancon told me that he accomplished one of his major dreams: to win a fight in the UFC. On if he felt any pressure from the stature, Melancon said:
“One of the main things I kept thinking about was that this was my only goal that I set for myself in MMA. I wanted to fight and win in the UFC. So I just wanted to enjoy the moment and not take it for granted. I enjoyed the whole process.”
Melancon also told me that he would seek a return to the promotion at UFC 166, which takes place October 19 in his hometown of Houston. Instead, he'll make his way back into the Octagon two months earlier.
The bout is Gastelum's first since he scored a surprising upset over the heavily favored Uriah Hall in the TUF 17 finals.
UFC Fight Night: Condit vs. Kampmann 2 is headlined by a rematch between welterweight contenders Carlos Condit and Martin Kampmann. The pair first met on April 1, 2009, with Kampmann winning a controversial split decision. After the loss, Condit would string together five wins in a row and ultimately earn the right to challenge Georges St-Pierre for the welterweight championship belt; St-Pierre beat Condit last November to retain the title.