Chael Sonnen is staying at light heavyweight for the time being, and his next fight will be against another former champion. Sonnen confirmed on yesterday's UFC Fight Night studio broadcast that he'll take on Rashad Evans in the UFC 167 co-main event:
You heard it from the bad guy himself first: Rashad Evans faces Chael Sonnen in the co-main event of UFC 167 11/16 in Vegas— UFC (@ufc) September 4, 2013
Sonnen (29-13-1) thoroughly dominated Mauricio Rua in the UFC's debut card on Fox Sports 1, submitting the ex-PRIDE and UFC champion in the 1st round with a guillotine choke. This victory snapped his two fight losing streak (to Anderson Silva and Jon Jones) and put him in the top 10 rankings at both middleweight and light heavyweight.
Evans (18-3-1) had his own two fight losing streak (to Jon Jones and Antonio Rogerio Nogueira) broken with a split decision triumph over Dan Henderson at UFC 161. As recently as last week Rashad was with Sonnen in the analyst role for FS1 broadcasts.
While this won't have the verbal jawing of a fight like Sonnen vs. Belfort or Sonnen vs. Wanderlei, it's undeniably a more competitive fight. Depending on the result of Jon Jones/Alexander Gustafsson, it would be more than justifiable for the winner of this fight to be within touching distance of a title shot.
UFC 167 is headlined by Georges St. Pierre's welterweight title fight against Johny Hendricks.