Pearson vs Guillard set to fight

(R-L) Ross Pearson reacts after defeating Ryan Couture in their lightweight fight at the Ericsson Globe Arena
Ross Pearson is set to lock horns with Melvin Guillard in England.
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Mike Chiappetta

Mike Chiappetta has documented the fast-growing sport of mixed martial arts since 2006 for news organizations including SB Nation, NBCSports.com, FIGHT! Magazine, AOL and ESPN. He appears regularly as an analyst on countless television shows and radio programs, including CBS Radio and MMA Beat. Follow him on Twitter.


Moments after Melvin Guillard brilliantly knocked out Mac Danzig at UFC on FOX: Johnson vs. Moraga, he made a bold declaration. Despite only two wins in his previous six fights, Guillard proclaimed himself ready for anyone.

"There’s no pressure, as long as I’m well prepared and train hard, no one can beat me at 155," he said then.

Melvin Guillard reacts to his victory over Mac Danzig in their lightweight bout during the UFC on FOX event at Key Arena on July 27, 2013

Melvin Guillard goes into enemy territory to fight Ross Pearson at UFC Fight Night: Bisping vs Munoz.

Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC

Fresh off that victory, Guillard will face a steep challenge, agreeing to travel to Manchester, England, to face local star Ross Pearson as the co-main event of UFC Fight Night: Bisping vs. Munoz.

The news was reported on Tuesday's edition of UFC Tonight.

A win could serve to propel Guillard (31-12-2, 1 no contest) back into the lightweight division's upper echelon, where he resided for a lengthy stretch after winning seven of eight bouts from July 2008 to July 2011.

Before rebounding with the win over Danzig, Guillard had lost to both Jamie Varner and Donald Cerrone.

In Pearson, he'll face a fellow hard-hitting lightweight who prefers the standup game. After a short run trying the 145-pound weight class, Pearson (15-6) returned to his longtime home at 155 and has earned back-to-back knockouts of George Sotiropoulos and Ryan Couture.

Pearson is sure to enjoy a major home country advantage, as he hails from nearby Sunderland, less than a three-hour drive away. It will mark his first time fighting on British soil since Nov. 2009, when he earned a technical knockout win over Aaron Riley at UFC 105.

The event takes place on Oct. 26 at Manchester Arena.

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