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Machida v Henderson confirmed for UFC 157

ESPN staff
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Dan Henderson's knee is ready for action © Getty Images
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Former light-heavyweight champions Dan Henderson and Lyoto Machida will meet on February 23 in Anaheim, California, UFC officials confirmed on Thursday.

The bout will take place at UFC 157, with the winner possibly earning a 205lb title shot. Doubts had been expressed over the fitness of Henderson, but his knee is ready for action early in 2013.

Recently crowned UFC women's bantamweight champion Ronda Rousey will make the first defence of her title against Liz Carmouche in the main event.

"Ronda is the real deal," UFC president Dana White said. "She's nasty. She's mean. She's like (retired former light-heavyweight champion) Chuck Liddell. She goes out there and tries to finish her opponents.

"And Carmouche is tough as nails, too. She was a Marine and she's got great ground-and-pound. I look forward to having the women join the UFC."

Henderson (29-8) was slated to face light-heavyweight Jon Jones on September 1 at UFC 151 in Las Vegas. But an injury forced Henderson to withdraw from the bout. Machida later rebuffed an offer from UFC officials to step in for Henderson.

The event was cancelled after Jones refused to fight Henderson's eventual replacement, Chael Sonnen, on eight days' notice.

Henderson, on a four-fight win streak, has held 205lb titles in Strikeforce and Pride. He also held the Pride 170lb belt. The veteran has not fought since defeating Mauricio Shogun Rua by unanimous decision at UFC 139 in November 2011.

Machida, a former UFC light-heavyweight champion, bounced back from a submission loss to Jones at UFC 140 with a second-round knockout of Ryan Bader on August 4. He has a professional record of 18-3.

The UFC 157 main card also will feature a bantamweight showdown between former WEC featherweight champion Urijah Faber and Ivan Menjivar.

This article first appeared on ESPN.com

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