UFC President Dana White confirmed on Twitter that Overeem vs. Lesnar will take place on December 30 in Las Vegas.
The fight will be a huge pay-per-view event, maybe the UFC's most profitable fight of 2011. Lesnar is the single biggest pay-per-view draw in MMA, while Overeem has developed a monstrous reputation over the last couple of years, defending his Strikeforce heavyweight title while also winning the most prestigious title in kickboxing, the K-1 World Grand Prix.
Shortly after signing his UFC contract, Overeem told the Los Angeles Times that he's excited about the challenge of meeting Lesnar in the cage.
"Brock is a big name, a dangerous guy, and this is a dream matchup," Overeem said. "Brock's a big guy, an exciting wrestler with his takedowns. I want to see this fight myself. Overall, I'm a different fighter. A striker, athletic, big. These are going to be two big trucks going at it on a collision course."
Overeem's path to the UFC has been a strange one: When the UFC purchased Strikeforce, it seemed like only a matter of time before Overeem would step into the Octagon. But a contract dispute between UFC/Strikeforce parent company Zuffa and Overeem's management at Golden Glory led to Overeem being released by the company. Those issues, however, have obviously been resolved, and Overeem is now set to fight in the world's biggest MMA promotion for the first time.
Lesnar, meanwhile, has been out of action for nearly a year while recovering from diverticulitis. White recently said that Lesnar is 100 percent healthy, and Lesnar is apparently ready to start a training camp to meet Overeem.
The fight itself is a fascinating contrast of styles. Overeem may be the best striker in the heavyweight division, and Lesnar has struggled with his striking defense in his last couple of fights. But Overeem has never faced a wrestler nearly as good as Lesnar, and the muscular Overeem, who has grown accustomed to overpowering his opponents, also hasn't faced anyone as strong as Lesnar.
Lesnar vs. Overeem should be a sensational fight and an enormous pay-per-view draw. Combining that fight with heavyweight champion Cain Velasquez taking on Junior dos Santos on Fox in November, the UFC is positioning itself for some huge heavyweight attractions ahead.
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