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Nik Lentz goes up to lightweight, meets Danny Castillo at UFC on FOX 17

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Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

Nik Lentz is moving on up.

The perennially ranked featherweight is shifting back to lightweight and will meet Danny Castillo at UFC on FOX 17 on Dec. 19 in Orlando, the UFC confirmed Tuesday. The Orlando Sentinel was the first to report the news.

Lentz (25-7-2, 1 NC) moved down to 145 in 2012 and went 4-2 in the weight class. However, the Minnesota native has lost two of his last three fights, including a third-round submission defeat against Charles Oliveira in May. Lentz, 31, only has losses at featherweight to Oliveira and Chad Mendes.

Castillo (17-9) has lost three in a row, but the last one against Jim Miller was a heavily disputed split decision. The Team Alpha Male veteran has compiled a 12-9 record over his career with WEC and the UFC. Castillo, 36, only has losses against ranked lightweights going back to 2011.

UFC on FOX 17 will be headlined by a lightweight title fight between champion Rafael dos Anjos and Donald Cerrone. The co-main event, just announced Tuesday, is a heavyweight contender bout between Junior dos Santos and Alistair Overeem. Also on the card, Nate Diaz returns to face Michael Johnson.