Chris Weidman will return to the UFC this summer after more than three years following a devastating leg break during a 2021 fight.
The former UFC middleweight champion will fight Brad Tavares at UFC 292 on Aug. 19 in Boston, sources confirmed Monday with ESPN.
Newsday was the first to report the news.
Weidman, 38, suffered the visible broken right leg throwing a kick that was checked by opponent Uriah Hall on April 24, 2021. Weidman fell to the ground in pain right away. The diagnosis was a fractured tibia and fibula. After surgery, the bone was not healing correctly so another operation was needed.
Weidman said in early 2022 that he hoped to fight during that calendar year, but a bout did not materialize. He was able to compete in a grappling match back in March, losing to Owen Livesy by decision.
Weidman (15-6) knocked out Anderson Silva in July 2013 to win the UFC middleweight title, ending Silva’s UFC record 16-fight winning streak. The Long Island, New York, native had three successful title defenses thereafter, including a TKO win in a rematch with Silva when Silva himself snapped his left leg throwing a kick against a Weidman check.
Weidman returned to middleweight in 2020, after one fight at light heavyweight, to beat Omari Akhmedov via unanimous decision.
Tavares (19-8) has dropped two straight, most recently a knockout loss to Bruno Silva in April. The Hawaii native, who lives and trains in Las Vegas, was on a two-fight winning streak before that. Tavares, 35, has been in the UFC for 13 years, accumulating a 14-8 record in the promotion.
UFC 292 will be headlined by a UFC bantamweight title fight between champion Aljamain Sterling and challenger Sean O’Malley. Weidman is a longtime teammate of Sterling, training under coaches Ray Longo and Matt Serra.