Rich Attonito (10-4, 3-1 UFC) returns to the UFC Octagon to welcome newcomer Jake Hecht (12-2) to the big stage at UFC 140. The two middleweights are looking to make their mark and climb up to the main card for fights in the future. Attonito was originally set to face Claude Patrick but Patrick was moved into a bout with Brian Ebersole and Hecht got the call as a replacement.
How do these two stack up?
Attonito: 34 years old | 5'10"
Hecht: 27 years old | 6'0"
What have these two done recently?
How did these two get here?
Attonito was a successful collegiate wrestler who eventually made the transition to mixed martial arts after former teammate Phil Baroni found success in the sport. He had a career of mixed success until landing himself a spot on eleventh season of The Ultimate Fighter. Attonito would have to leave the season's competition after breaking his hand but did get a spot on the season finale where he stopped Jamie Yager with punches in the second round. He has found himself with a 3-1 UFC record and new life in the sport.
Hecht fought on the regional scene for several years before getting the chance to step up his competition when he faced Che Mills in England in 2010. Mills took the fight by decision but Hecht rattled off three straight wins. He's now based out of Ireland where he works as a trainer and has had pro fights.
Why should you care?
Hecht is trying to prove that he belongs in the UFC after a fortunate series of events led to this opportunity while Attonito is looking to run his UFC record to 4-1, something few would have predicted.
More UFC 140 preview coverage from Bloody Elbow after the jump.