Mandatory Credit: USA TODAY Sports & BKFC
Former undisputed UFC middleweight champion, Luke Rockhold is reportedly slated to snap his recent retirement from combat sports – booking a reported BKFC (Bare Knuckle Fighting Championship) outing with fellow Octagon veteran, Mike Perry.
Rockhold, a former undisputed middleweight champion under the banner of the UFC and the now-defunct, Strikeforce, most recently featured at UFC 278 back in August of last year, taking on one-time title challenger, Paulo Costa.
Suffering his third consecutive defeat following losses to both Yoel Romero and Jan Blachowicz, Rockhold dropped a competitive unanimous decision loss to Costa, before informing UFC color commentator, Joe Rogan of his intentions to retire from mixed martial arts with immediate effect. Luke Rockhold would then formally confirm his retirement from active competition to the UFC.
However, according to an initial report from both MyMMANews, and BJPENN.com reporter, Cole Shelton, Luke Rockhold has penned a deal with the David Feldman-led BKFC banner to make a return to combat sports – booking a subsequent fight with UFC welterweight alum, Perry to boot at the middleweight limit of 185lbs.
“Hearing that the big news BKFC will drop on (Ariel) Helwani is that Luke Rockhold has signed and will fight Mike Perry,” MyMMANews tweeted. “Not sure this is ahs the big shockwave value they are hoping for, but of course, I would watch.”
Hearing that the big news BKFC will drop on Helwani is that Luke Rockhold has signed and will fight Mike Perry. Not sure this has the shockwave value they are hoping for, but of course, I would watch.
— MyMMANews (@MyMMANews) February 27, 2023
“Heard this will be the two surprised guests [on The MMA Hour] today, as the fight will be announced by (David) Feldman,” Cole Shelton tweeted.”
Luke Rockhold struck UFC gold back in 2015 in a win over Chris Weidman
A former undisputed UFC middleweight champion, Rockhold struck division gold in the co-main event of UFC 194 back in 2015, stopping Chris Weidman with a slew of eventual fourth-round ground strikes.
As for Perry, the polarizing Michigan native has enjoyed a successful transition to BKFC since his UFC departure, debuting with a decision win over Julian Lane back in February of last year.
Headlining a London outing for the promotion in August of last year, Perry defeated Bellator MMa welterweight contender, Michael Page in a majority decision triumph.
BKFC founder, Feldman also confirmed during his appearance on The MMA Hour how former UFC featherweight title challenger, Chad Mendes would make his return on the same card in a fight against former undisputed UFC lightweight champion, Eddie Alvarez — with the Philadelphia native making his first outing under the promotion’s banner at the super lightweight limit of 165lbs.
BKFC 41 takes place on April 29. from the 1stBank Center in Broomfield, Colorado.