Diego Sanchez is not going anywhere.
A free agent since his loss in July to Michel Chiesa, the original “The Ultimate Fighter” winner has inked a new deal with the UFC and agreed to face Michel Pereira at the upcoming UFC Rio Rancho card on Feb. 15 in New Mexico, the company announced on Wednesday.
Sanchez (29-12) was on a two-fight winning streak over Craig White and Mickey Gall prior to his decision defeat to Chiesa at UFC 239. The 41-fight veteran is 2-2 since going back up to welterweight in 2017.
There were indications Sanchez might leave the UFC after 14 years with the promotion, potentially starting a career in Lethwei, or Burmese boxing. Dave Leduc, a Lethwei champion, told “The Joe Rogan Experience” that Sanchez had inquired about a fight in the full-contact combat sport. Sanchez later clarified that he was indeed a free agent, but intended to stay with the UFC.
Pereira (23-10, 2 no-contests) made some noise in his Octagon debut in May, knocking out Danny Roberts in spectacular fashion. But he gassed out and lost a decision to last-minute replacement Tristan Connelly in September.
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