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Brandon Vera returns to heavyweight, battles Ben Rothwell at UFC 164

Gary A. Vasquez-US PRESSWIRE

UFC veteran Brandon Vera (12-6, 1 NC) returns to heavyweight for the first time in five years to take on "Big" Ben Rothwell (32-9) at UFC 164. Vera announced the bout Thursday morning via Twitter.

UFC 164 takes place August 31, 2013 at the BMO Harris Bradley Center in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. No additional bouts have been confirmed by promotion officials, although recent reports linked both Alistair Overeem and Diego Sanchez to the fight card.

Vera returns to his former weight class after compiling a lukewarm 4-4 (1 NC) record at light heavyweight since 2008. The 35-year-old owns just one win over his last five UFC appearances, having defeated Eliot Marshall via unanimous decision, fought to a no contest against Thiago Silva, and lost to Randy Couture, Jon Jones, and Mauricio Rua, the last of which came in the tightly contested main event of UFC on FOX 4.

Vera racked up a 4-2 record during his original UFC run at heavyweight, winning four straight punctuated by a 69-second TKO victory over Frank Mir, before losing consecutive bouts to Tim Sylvia and Fabricio Werdum.

Rothwell, meanwhile, looks to rebound after submitting to a second-round guillotine choke at the hands of Gabriel Gonzaga at UFC on FX 7. The 31-year-old former IFL standout has alternated wins and loses since 2008, notably defeating Gilbert Yvel and Brendan Schaub, but losing to Andrei Arlovski, Cain Velasquez, Mark Hunt and Gonzaga.

Rothwell fought just once a year for each of the past four years, however that streak will end if he makes it to UFC 164 unscathed.

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