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Not many of us expected Brazilian up-and-comer Charles “do Bronx” Oliveira to absolutely manhandle TUF 12 winner Jonathan Brookins in the fashion he did at the TUF 15 Finale. Sure, Brookins’ head movement and general striking stance most closely resembles a Rock ‘Em Sock ‘Em robot when his block has been knocked off, but Oliveira’s performance, which improved his featherweight record to 2-0, was truly a coming out party for a fighter who already had a considerable amount of hype behind him. Given the circumstances, it’s all the more appropriate (not to mention exciting) that Oliveira has been booked to take on fellow ever-rising featherweight Cub Swanson at UFC 152, which goes down on September 22nd at the Air Canada Centre in Toronto, Canada. Swanson has looked nothing short of spectacular lately, blistering George Roop and Ross Pearson in consecutive bouts at UFC on FOX 2 and UFC on FX 4.
After falling to the secret death-touch taught to Demian Maia by Sensei Seagal at UFC 148, Dong Hyun Kim is set to return to action against the always dangerous but struggling Paulo Thiago at UFC on FUEL 6, which will make for the UFC’s first ever trip to China on November 10th from the Cotai Arena in Cotai, Macau. Thiago last performed a dead-on impression of a cadaver in his bout with Siyar Bahadurzada at UFC on FUEL 2 (his first career loss via KO) and has dropped three of his last four bouts, so look for him to try and end things impressively against Kim because his career may be on the line.
And in heavyweight booking news…
Former heavyweight title challenger Gabriel Gonzaga is set to return to action for the second time in 2012, at UFC 153 in Rio. Since being fired from the UFC, then retiring from the sport over two years ago, the star of the Jack Links beef jerky commercials has collected two straight victories, including a first round submission over promotional newcomer Ednaldo Oliveira in his return to the octagon at UFC 142.
Gonzaga will have his hands full when he takes on 6’2”, 264-pound powerhouse Geronimo Dos Santos. Dos Santos will be making his UFC debut after collecting 9 victories in 2011 alone (You hear that Travis? Step it up!). While his win streak is pretty impressive, the fact that he is debuting doesn’t bode well against a guy like Gonzaga, who has built a career out of the crushed dreams of promotional newbies. Based on his last performance, it seems that Gonzaga has also learned to finally use his BJJ wizardry to his advantage, so let’s hope he doesn’t revert back to the guy who thinks he can stand and trade with the best of ‘em, or he could be in for a long night against Dos Santos.
To familiarize you with Dos Santos a little bit (and to spice up these fight booking-style posts), here is a video of a fight in which Dos Santos goes all Kongo vs. Barry on some fatass.
Who you like for these, Potato Nation?