Former UFC lightweight George Roop will look for a third straight bantamweight win at UFC 166, where he'll meet Francisco Rivera.
MMAJunkie.com confirmed the 135-pound matchup with UFC officials.
After being knocked out by featherweight contender Cub Swanson, the 6'1" Roop made a surprising decision to return to the bantamweight class, where he had an 0-1 record. However, the switch seems to be paying off for Roop, who has already defeated Reuben Duran and Brian Bowles in 2013.
Since being released from the UFC roster in 2011, Rivera has not been beaten. However, Rivera did recently have a win taken away due to a failed drug test following a knockout of Roland Delorme at UFC 149. Rivera returned from a six-month suspension in February and stopped Edwin Figueroa to get back into the win column.
These 31-year-old fighters are past the point of being prospects, but both have shown promise over their recent appearances. The winner of this UFC 166 bout could find themselves on the fringe of title contention and earn a fight with a top-10 bantamweight.
Scheduled for Oct. 19, UFC 166 will be hosted by Houston's Toyota Center. With the addition of Roop and Rivera, the event's fight card now looks like this:
- Cain Velasquez vs. Junior dos Santos
- Daniel Cormier vs. Roy Nelson
- Gilbert Melendez vs. Diego Sanchez
- Luke Rockhold vs. Tim Boetsch
- Nate Marquardt vs. Hector Lombard
- George Roop vs. Francisco Rivera
- Gabriel Gonzaga vs. Shawn Jordan
- George Sotiropoulos vs. KJ Noons
- Tony Ferguson vs. Mike Rio
- TJ Waldburger vs. Adlan Amagov
Sean Smith is a Featured MMA Columnist for Bleacher Report who has also had work promoted on UFC.com and TheMMACorner.com. Follow on Twitter @SeanSmithMMA.