According to MMAJunkie.com's Dan Stupp, former UFC heavyweight title contender Gabriel Gonzaga will return to action on June 25th at MMAX: Heavyweight Xplosion in Las Vegas, Nevada against recent Bellator competitor Josh Burns:
In his first fight since his release from the organization, former UFC title challenger Gabriel Gonzaga (11-6) meets Bellator veteran Josh Burns (5-2) in June.
MMAjunkie today confirmed the matchup with event sources.
Gonzaga and Burns meet June 25 at MMA Explosions' "MMAX: Heavyweight Xplosion" event.
The event is expected to take place at the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas.
Gonzaga was released from the UFC following a decision loss to Brendan Schaub at UFC 121 in October. He was previously defeated by Junior dos Santos via TKO in only 3:53 of the first round at UFC Live: Vera vs. Jones in March of last year. He had amassed a 3-4 record with the promotion following a title showdown with Randy Couture at UFC 74 back in August of 2007.
Gonzaga had stated that he would concentrate on Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu over mixed martial arts following his release from the UFC, hinting that we may have seen the last of Gonzaga in the sport. But as most fans have come to realize, retirements in mixed martial arts don't last forever, hence Gonzaga's continued place on the USAT/SBN Consensus Rankings.
Burns' last appearance came at Bellator 40 against Eric Prindle, a bout that received an enormous amount of comedy relief from fans via Twitter. From all indications, this should be an easy tune-up fight for Gonzaga to get the ball rolling again.