Heavyweights collide as UFC returns to San Diego on July 15th


— UFC® will once again bring an action-packed card to Southern California when two of the heavyweight division’s toughest fighters, former two-time heavyweight champion Frank Mir and knockout artist Todd Duffee, collide. The heavy hitters meet at the Valley View Casino Center in San Diego on Wednesday, July 15, the promotion’s first visit to San Diego since August 2010.

The former two-time UFC heavyweight champion, Mir (17-9, fighting out of Las Vegas, Nev.) is coming off a devastating first-round finish of Antonio “Bigfoot” Silva in Brazil on Feb. 22, and has one of the most feared ground attacks in UFC history. Holding the record for most wins in the UFC heavyweight division (15), Mir’s resume includes victories over some of the world’s best in Minotauro Nogueira, Roy Nelson, Mirko Cro Cop and former UFC heavyweight champion Brock Lesnar. Getting the fight to the ground will be key for Mir in this classic grappler vs. striker matchup as all of Duffee’s wins have come by way of knockout. Duffee (9-2, fighting out of Boca Raton, Fla.) owns the fastest knockout in UFC heavyweight history (:07 second KO over Tim Hague at UFC 102), and is coming off an impressive first-round finish over Anthony Hamilton at UFC 181 last December.

In addition, one of the sport’s fastest rising stars, No. 13 lightweight contender Al Iaquinta (12-3-1, fighting out of Wantagh, N.Y.) will meet hard-hitting, 11th-ranked Bobby Green (23-6, fighting out of Fontana, Calif.). With 24 finishes between the two, fans can expect an action-packed battle in a Fight of the Night contender.

Plus, former STRIKEFORCE® lightweight champion and ninth-ranked Josh Thomson (20-7, 1 NC, fighting out of San Jose, Calif.) makes his return to the Octagon® against The Ultimate Fighter Season 13 winner, No. 12 Tony Ferguson (19-3, fighting out of Ventura, Calif.). Currently riding a five-fight winning streak, Ferguson takes a big step up in competition as he makes his ascent to the top of one of the UFC’s most talent-rich divisions.

Also scheduled for the card:

· In a battle of explosive strikers, Alan Jouban (11-3, fighting out of Los Angeles, Calif.) takes on Matt Dwyer (8-2, fighting out of Kelowna, British Columbia, Canada) in a welterweight clash.

· 13th-ranked women’s bantamweight contender Jessica Andrade (12-4, fighting out of Niteroi, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil) meets The Ultimate Fighter Season 18 contestant Sarah Moras (4-2, fighting out of Kelowna, British Columbia, Canada).

· Coming off a first-round knockout victory, The Ultimate Fighter Season 15 veteran Sam Sicilia (14-5, fighting out of Spokane, Wash.) returns to the Octagon to face Doo Ho Choi (12-1, fighting out of Gumi, South Korea) in a featherweight scrap.

· Boise State wrestling standout Scott Jorgensen (15-10, fighting out of Boise, Idaho) makes his return to the bantamweight division when he meets highly decorated judoka Manny Gamburyan (17-9, 1 NC, fighting out of Hollywood, Calif.), a training partner of UFC women’s bantamweight champion Ronda Rousey.

· Looking for a fourth straight victory, lightweight Kevin Lee (10-1, fighting out of Las Vegas, Nev.) meets two-time U.S. Tae Kwon Do national champion James Moontasri (8-2, fighting out of Los Angeles, Calif.).

· It will be Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu black belt Igor Araujo (25-7, fighting out of Albuquerque, N.M.) vs. Southern California native Sean Strickland (15-1, fighting out of Corona, Calif.) in a 170-pound duel.

· Plus, welterweights Andrew Craig (9-3, fighting out of Houston, Texas) and Edgar Garcia (14-4, fighting out of Yuma, Ariz.) collide.

For more information or current fight news, visit www.ufc.com. All bouts live and subject to change.