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Julian Marquez to fight Maki Pitolo at UFC 258

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Julian Marquez
Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

Julian Marquez is set to return in 2021.

MMA Fighting confirmed with people with knowledge of the matchup that Marquez (7-2) will fight Maki Pitolo (13-7) at UFC 258 on Feb. 13, with a location still to be determined.

The bout was first reported by MMA Junkie.

When Marquez steps into the octagon, it will mark his first fight since The Ultimate Fighter 27 Finale in July 2018. A major upper body injury put him on the sidelines following that appearance and a booking against Saparbeg Safarov for an event this past November was canceled when Safarov withdrew due to weight management issues the day before their fight.

Marquez won a contract on the Contender Series in August 2017 with a head kick KO of Phil Hawes and then won his UFC debut four months later, submitting Darren Stewart. At the TUF 17 Finale he dropped a split decision to Alessio di Chirico.

Pitolo has lost his last two fights. Also signed from the Contender Series, Pitolo is 1-3 in the UFC so far, with his lone win being a second-round TKO of Charles Byrd at UFC 250. He most recently fought at a UFC Fight Night event in August, losing a unanimous decision to Impa Kasanganay.