Aaron Riley returns to the octagon to face Justin Salas at UFC on Fox 8

Jon Kopaloff

Longtime UFC vet Aaron Riley makes his return, following a nearly two year hiatus, to fight Justin Salas at UFC on Fox 8 in Seattle.

Aaron Riley is one of those fighters who seems to have been around forever without ever getting older. With a 44 fight career that saw him make his UFC debut against Robbie Lawler in 2002, its hard to believe that he's only 32. In his last fight out Anthony Ferguson broke his jaw and the fight was stopped at the end of the first round. Since then he's been pulled from a fight with Cody McKenzie due to injury; it will be nearly two years between octagon appearances when he steps into the cage at UFC on Fox 8.

His opponent will be the much less experienced, but not much younger Justin Salas. Salas is a 2012 BE scouting report prospect and former Division I wrestler. He most recently lost to Tim Means via quick KO at UFC on FX 3 in June of last year. He was set to return against Edson Barboza at UFC on FX 7 but was removed from the card due to injury and replaced by Lucas Martins. All things considered this is something of a break for Salas as Riley should provide a good, but much more winnable fight.

Either way I expect this to be an entertaining undercard scuffle. Riley is a tough brawling fighter who has the experience to challenge Salas in all areas. With his long career I don't expect ring rust to be too much of a factor, but it's always difficult to say what kind of shape a fighters kept himself in over a long layoff. For Salas, it's his fight to lose, but considering his last performance that's a distinct possibility.

UFC on Fox 8 takes place on July 27th in Seattle, Washington. Here's the card so far:

Demetrious Johnson vs. John Moraga
Jake Ellenberger vs. Rory MacDonald

Robbie Lawler vs. Tarec Saffiedine
Miesha Tate vs. Liz Carmouche
Mac Danzig vs. Melvin Guillard
Danny Castillo vs. Bobby Green
Julie Kedzie vs. Germaine de Randamie
Spencer Fisher vs. Yves Edwards
Michael Chiesa vs. Reza Madadi
Matt Mitrione vs. Brendan Schaub
Ed Herman vs. Trevor Smith
Aaron Riley vs. Justin Salas

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