UFC President Dana White has confirmed veteran Donald "Cowboy" Cerrone will face Justin Gaethje in the main event of UFC Fight Night 158 on September 14.
Kevin Iole of Yahoo Sports reported White announced the bout between two of the UFC's most entertaining combatants and said: "Get ready, Vancouver! This fight is going to be ridiculous!"
The card will take place at the Rogers Arena in Vancouver, Canada, and already features fights between Glover Teixeira and Nikita Krylov, as well as Andrew Sanchez and David Branch.
Cerrone, 36, is set for his fourth fight of 2019. He's 2-1 for the year so far, having followed up convincing wins over Alexander Hernandez and Al Iaquinta with a defeat to Tony Ferguson via doctor's stoppage.
The elder fighter lost to "El Cucuy" at the end of the second round in their bout at UFC 238. Cerrone was under heavy pressure from Ferguson at the time but blew his nose in between rounds, and journalist Ariel Helwani described the repercussions:
MMA writer Stephie Haynes believes it could be too soon for Cerrone (36-12-1) to return to the Octagon given the defeat in June:
Stephie Haynes @CrooklynMMA
Don't get me wrong, I love Gaethje/Cerrone but my little Jiminy Cricket voice keeps whispering, "But it's too soon for Cowboy after what El Cucuy did to him." Just like that, I lost a fraction of my joy for this fight. Hope Donald is getting a king's ransom for it. Hope both are.
Gaethje (20-2), is a particularly strong opponent to face in his comeback bout, and one who has 17 knockouts from his 20 victories.
The Arizona native has only fought once in 2019 but impressed greatly in his first-round knockout stoppage of Edson Barboza on March 30. Gaethje has won successive UFC fights for the first time in his career after an even quicker first-round knockout of James Vick in August last year.
Reporter Mike Bohn hyped up this clash as a must-watch and noted Cerrone's positive record fighting in Canada:
The duo are sure to put on an entertaining show of the depth on offer in the lightweight division, with Cerrone particularly motivated to get back to winning ways after a tough loss.