Massachusetts Natives Joe Lauzon and Jorge Rivera Set for UFC 118

Joshua CareySenior Analyst IJune 24, 2010

UFC 118, which takes place in Boston, MA, will feature a lightweight championship re-match between Frankie Edgar and challenger B.J. Penn.

Before the two 155 lb elite fighters step into the Octagon, Boston's premier mixed martial artist will be in action.

Spike TV will air two preliminary fights live from the TD Garden at 9 pm ET/PT that will showcase Massachusetts' own Joe Lauzon (18-5) as he takes on Terry Etim (14-3).

Lauzon, a veteran of The Ultimate Fighter Season Five, exploded into the UFC with a knockout victory over Jens Pulver back at UFC 63.

Since the Pulver fight, Lauzon has went 4-2, with his most recent action inside the Octagon being a decision loss to Sam Stout. To Lauzon's credit, the loss to Stout came after a long 11 month layoff due to injury, and he will now look to get back on track to make a run at the championship.

Like Lauzon, Etim steps into the fight coming off a loss and was riding high on a four fight win streak, until he was derailed by Rafael dos Anjos at UFC 112.

The fight at UFC 118 will mark Etim's sixth time he has stepped inside of the Octagon live on Spike TV, and none have been more important than the one against Lauzon.

In addition, Jorge Rivera (18-7), also of Massachusetts, will meet Alessio Sakara (19-7, 1 NC) in a middleweight tilt.

Rivera is currently on a three fight win streak, with the most recent coming way of impressive TKO over Nate Quarry in March.

The Massachusetts native will make his way into the fight against Sakara looking to extend his win streak in front of the hometown crowd.

Sakara, who trains out of the famed American Top Team, is also on a three fight win streak, with his last performance ending in the first round.

James Irvin fell victim to Sakara's striking and never made it out of the first round. Sakara once competed at light heavyweight, but made the drop to middleweight and has since gone 3-1.

Additional bouts could air on Spike TV if time permits.

(photo of Joe Lauzon from Unfiltered MMA Podcasts )