It appears that Gunnar Nelson’s return is close to being finalized, and it’s against Alex Oliveira in Canada at UFC 231.
Gunnar Nelson has not fought since July of 2017, suffering a controversial first-round knockout to Santiago Ponzinibbio after having his eyes poked by the Argentinian in the quick one-round fight in the main event of UFC Chile. Nelson had come off back to back wins prior to the defeat over Alan Jouban and Albert Tumenov, earning Performance of the Night bonuses for each submission victory. Nelson was scheduled to compete against fellow welterweight contender Neil Magny in 2018, but pulled out due to a knee injury.
However, it appears that Nelson is ready to return to the Octagon. According to many sources (and Gunnar Nelson himself), an intriguing matchup of Gunnar Nelson and Alex Oliveira is close to being finalized for UFC 231 in Toronto. Oliveira is in a much different position than is Nelson though, he goes into the bout looking for his third straight win.
Oliveira is currently on a two-fight winning streak and has won six of his last eight bouts, including big wins over the likes of former UFC interim welterweight champion Carlos Condit, and former Bellator lightweight champion Will Brooks. The Brazilian last defeated Carlo Perdersoli Jr. in Sao Paulo in September.
Brazilian Cowboy flirted with the lightweight division several times in his Octagon career, but missing weight by over five pounds against Brooks in 2016 sent Oliveira permanently to 170 pounds.
UFC 231 is set for December 8, in Toronto, Ontario, Canada at the Scotiabank Arena. The card is headlined by a featherweight championship fight between Max Holloway and Brian Ortega. In the co-main event, Joanna Jedrzejczyk and Valentina Shevchenko will battle for the vacant woman’s flyweight title. A potential challenger to that flyweight title could also be determined when Katlyn Chookagian fights Jessica Eye earlier that night.