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John Dodson vs. Zach Makovsky added to loaded UFC 187

Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

One of the UFC's most stacked cards just got better.

John Dodson will make his return to the Octagon to take on Zach Makovsky at UFC 187 on May 23 in Las Vegas, the UFC announced Sunday. The Memorial Day Weekend card already has two title fights -- Jon Jones vs. Anthony Johnson and Chris Weidman vs. Vitor Belfort -- and a big-time lightweight matchup between Donald Cerrone and Khabib Nurmagomedov.

Dodson (16-6) has not fought since knocking out John Moraga last June. The perennial flyweight title contender tore his ACL in July and had to undergo surgery. "The Magician" has won two straight after falling to champion Demetrious Johnson in January 2013. In all, the 30-year-old Jackson-Winkeljohn MMA product has won seven of his last eight and gave Johnson as good of a run as any challenger.

Makovsky (19-5) is coming off an impressive unanimous decision win over Tim Elliott at UFC Fight Night: Henderson vs. Thatch earlier this month. Before that, the 31-year-old fell to Jussier Formiga in August, but had won four straight previously.  Makovsky, who trains at Marcelo Garcia Academy and Tristar Gym, is the former Bellator MMA bantamweight champion.

UFC 187 at MGM Grand is headlined by Jones defending his light heavyweight title against Johnson. Weidman vs. Belfort for the middleweight belt is the co-headliner. The loaded card also has a heavyweight fight between Travis Browne and Andrei Arlovski and another top flyweight bout between Joseph Benavidez and Moraga. The event is shaping up to be one of the biggest in the history of the promotion.

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