Friday, August 01, 2008

Martin Kampmann vs. Nate Marquardt likely to finalize UFC 88 main card

by Dann Stupp on Aug 01, 2008 at 12:15 am ET

September's UFC 88 event at Atlanta's Phillips Arena in apparently has its final televised bout.

A source close to the event tells ( that middleweight contenders Nate Marquardt (26-8-2 MMA, 5-2 UFC) and Martin Kampmann (16-2 MMA, 4-0 UFC) have agreed to meet at the show. Official announcement of the bout is expected within the next week.

The fight rounds out a pay-per-view main card headlined by a light heavyweight bout of "The Ultimate Fighter 2" winner Rashad Evans vs. former UFC champion Chuck Liddell.

With Yushin Okami on the shelf with a broken hand and Patrick Cote set to take on UFC middleweight champion Anderson Silva in October, the Marquardt-Kampmann fight could have a significant impact on the division's title picture.

Marquardt, a 29-year-old Team Jackson fighter, is coming off a bizarre loss to Thales Leites. After a defeat to Silva and a subsequent submission victory over Jeremy Horn, Marquardt was hoping to reclaim top contender's status. Instead, he suffered two costly (and arguably controversial) point deductions in his UFC 85 fight with Leites and ultimately suffered a split-decision loss.

It was just his second loss in 10 fights and nearly five years.

Kampmann, meanwhile, goes for his fifth straight victory in the UFC -- and 10th win overall. Back in June the 26-year-old Xtreme Couture fighter returned from a 16-month layoff (due to a knee injury) and scored a first-round submission victory over Jorge Rivera.

Of Kampmann's 16 professional wins, only one has come via decision.



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