Former Strikeforce welterweight Jason High (16-3, MMA) will make his return to the UFC on June 8 when he heads into Fortaleza, Brazil to take on rising prospect, Erick Silva. The UFC on FUEL TV 10 card will mark High’s return to the promotion after he was cut in 2010 following a loss in his Octagon debut.
For the 31-year-old who is making his comeback on the hinges of a 7-fight win streak, he’s just glad to be back in action. Last year, High was expecting to compete on Strikeforce’s November 3 event that was ultimately canceled. He last fought in July 2012 with Strikeforce and submitted Nate Moore via guillotine choke inside of 30 seconds.
Though Strikeforce held one last event in January, “The KC Bandit” didn’t get the chance to fight on that card and has had to wait and watch the chips fall where they may. Nonetheless, he remained working hard to stay on top of his game in the past year, though waiting to get back in the cage was slightly frustrating.
“It’s been a little difficult, but I just stayed busy in my gym back home,” High told MMA Fight Corner. “So it’s been pretty good with that. I stayed training, we all just got young guys to come through so I’m staying in shape and staying busy. I’d rather be fighting, but I haven’t been sitting around.”
“I wouldn’t say that it motivated me, but I staying busy, staying ready, so when the call did come I’d have a good place where I could jump off and be ready for a fight.”
Originally, High was expected to square off against Ildemar Alcantara. But about 5 weeks ago, he was informed that his opponent changed and that he would face the heavy-hitting Erick Silva. Luckily for High, he wasn’t too deep into his camp when the switch was made, so he didn’t have to alter much of his gameplan.
“And I got upgraded to the main card so it was really a win-win for me,” said High.
Now, he’ll make his first journey to Brazil in his UFC comeback and face one of its countrymen in Silva. Regardless of marching into hostile territory, High remains confident that he has what it takes to handle Silva.
“He’s tough, he’s explosive, he comes out hot that first round and a half. But, I’ll put the pressure on him and try to break him,” High said.
Silva so far has gone 2-2 in the UFC. Though his first loss against Carlo Praeter was the source of some controversy as referee Mario Yamasaki disqualified Silva for strikes to the back of the head when he initially appeared to have TKO’d Prater and won the fight. Most recently, Silva lost to Jon Fitch at UFC 153. Fitch out-classed Silva in the ground game in all aspects from wrestling to jiu-jitsu and came out ahead on the judges scorecards.
“Fitch laid out the game plan pretty well. I think I can catch him in some of those transitions and maybe submit him, catch him with a punch. I definitely think me and Fitch are similar fighters, but not the same. He tries to grind a little bit more than I do. I try to finish. I think I can finish him.”
UFC on FUEL TV 10’s event card will serve as The Ultimate Fighter Brasil 2’s finale. Coaches Fabricio Werdum and Antonio Rogerio Noguiera will meet in the main event. High vs. Silva will take place on FUEL TV’s main card.