Fifteen years on, UFC returns to São Paulo

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Vitor Belfort against Anthony Johnson at UFC 142. This time, the octagon will get set up in Rio State’s neighbor to the south. UFC publicity photo.

For the first time in 15 years, the UFC will again set up shop in “The Land of Drizzle”. The next Ultimate Fighting Championship event in Brazil has now been confirmed to take place January 19, 2013, in São Paulo City’s Ibirapuera Gynasium.

Headlined by a middleweight main event pitting Vitor Belfort against Michael Bisping, the show will also feature noteworthy match-ups between Daniel Sarafian and CB Dollaway, and Thiago Tavares against undefeated Russian Khabib Nurmagomedov.

Also on the card: Edson Barboza, Godofredo Pepey, Miltinho Vieira, Ronny Markes, Diego Nunes, Michael Kuiper, Thiago Bodão, Francisco Massaranduba and others.

The last time São Paulo was graced with the most widely recognized cage in MMA was in 1998. On the occasion, Portuguesa Gymnasium hosted the unforgettable clash of Belfort and Wanderlei Silva. Also fighting the card for the show, dubbed UFC 17.5, were Pedro Rizzo, Frank Shamrock, Tank Abbott, Ebenezer Braga, Pat Miletich, Jeremy Horn, Pete Williams and others.

Check out the card for the next UFC in “Sampa”:

UFC São Paulo
Ibirapuera Gymnasium, São Paulo, Brazil
January 19, 2012

Vitor Belfort vs. Michael Bisping
CB Dollaway vs. Daniel Sarafian
Ben Rothwell vs. Gabriel Napão
Khabib Nurmagomedov vs. Thiago Tavares
Godofredo Pepey vs. Miltinho Vieira
Andrew Craig vs. Ronny Markes
Nik Lentz vs. Diego Nunes
Justin Salas vs. Edson Barboza
Michael Kuiper vs. Thiago Bodão
George Roop vs. Iuri Marajó
Roger Hollett vs. Wagner Caldeirão
CJ Keith vs. Francisco Massaranduba

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