Norifumi "Kid" Yamamoto (18-6, 1 NC) will return to the UFC for the first time in three years when he steps inside the cage on February 28, 2015, at UFC 184.
Kid's return was posted on the UFC's Japanese website Tuesday evening and is slated to come against Roman Salazar (9-3).
Salazar made his UFC debut in October in a loss to Mitch Gagnon. He succumbed to a rear-naked choke in just two minutes and six seconds.
Yamamoto was one of the most highly regarded lighter-weight fighters in the world for a number of years. He spent the majority of his career fighting for K-1, where he came away with one of the fastest knockouts in MMA history to that point: a four-second KO of Kazuyuki Miyata in 2006.
Kid hit a wall when he joined Dream in 2009. He lost back-to-back fights to Joe Warren and Masanori Kanehara before earning a victory against Federico Lopez in 2010. It was after that victory that Yamamoto finally signed on the dotted line for UFC.
The Japanese superstar did not find success inside the Octagon in his initial run. Three fights between February 2011 and February 2012 ended in losses. His UFC debut came against current UFC flyweight champion Demetrious Johnson.
Yamamoto is now 37 years old, and the successes he once had are all but a distant memory. He will hope to bring back flashes of his brilliance in a fight against Salazar at UFC 184.
After dropping his initial UFC fight, Salazar is now being given a golden opportunity to make a name for himself with a victory against Yamamoto.
As the UFC rebounds from a rough 2014, the Yamamoto vs. Salazar bout is another exciting addition to the 2015 slate.
UFC 184 is headlined by two title fights. In the main event, Chris Weidman defends his UFC Middleweight Championship against Vitor Belfort. The co-main event features Ronda Rousey putting her UFC Women's Bantamweight Championship on the line against top contender Cat Zingano.
UFC 184 hails from the Staples Center in Los Angeles.