Diego Sanchez vs Matt Hughes Targeted For Fall UFC CardA welterweight bout between Diego “The Dream” Sanchez and UFC Hall of Famer Matt Hughes is targeted for an upcoming UFC event this Fall. While a date and venue have not yet been announced, the promotion revealed today that verbal agreements are already in place for the matchup.

Sanchez returned to 170 pounds last year after challenging unsuccessfully for the UFC Lightweight Championship, and has won two of his three fights since. Former long-time UFC Welterweight Champion Hughes will look to rebound from his 21-second knockout loss to B.J. Penn in November.

Sanchez (23-4-0) has recently undergone changes in his career, as he returned to his former team at Jackson’s Mixed Martial Arts in Albuquerque, New Mexico and shed his “Nightmare” moniker in favour of “The Dream.” While his welterweight return was initially unsuccessful when Sanchez was upset by John “The Hitman” Hathaway last May, he rebounded with a decision win over former top contender Paulo Thiago in October. Most recently, Sanchez earned a close and highly unpopular judges’ decision against another “Hitman,” Martin Kampmann, in March. He has won six of his last eight fights.

Hughes (45-8-0) looked to be nearing the end of his storied career after losing the UFC Welterweight Championship to current champion Georges “Rush” St. Pierre at UFC 65, as he was defeated in two of his next three fights. However, the veteran wrestler had other plans, and he put together a three-fight winning streak from 2009 to 2010 that was punctuated by an impressive choke out of Ricardo “Big Dog” Almeida at UFC 117. The win put Hughes back in the title mix, but he lasted just 21 seconds in a rubber match with “The Prodigy” B.J. Penn at UFC 123 and talk once again turned to a possible retirement.

With today’s announcement, fans are assured that Hughes will compete at least one more time inside the Octagon, but Sanchez’s aggressive style and fast-paced offence could pose significant problems for the UFC legend. Hughes has defeated younger opposition in the past, however, and a victory over Sanchez would be huge at this stage of Hughes’s career, whether he opts to continue fighting or not.



(Photo Credit: Sherdog.com)

  1. Yawn.