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Soa Palelei returns to UFC; expected to fight at UFC 161

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Soa Palelei MMA FighterAustralian Soa Palelei has signed a four-fight deal with the Ultimate Fighting Championships according to the fighter's new management team.

American based Paradigm Sports Management who inked Palelei to their management company books a week ago announced that the heavyweight has signed with the UFC through a press-release. 

“I’m thankful to Dana White and Joe Silva for giving me this opportunity to come back to the UFC to showcase my skills,” Palelei commented in the release. “With determination, hard work and a great team, I’m happy to say that today I have signed with the UFC. I look forward to competing in the best organization in the world,” he added.

A source also revealed to Fightnewsaustralia.com that Palelei is touted to appear on the UFC 161 card in June with 30 year-old Stipe Miocic (9-1, UFC 3-1) slated as an potential opponent. UFC executives have yet to formally announce the event or the fight.

Palelei will bring a 18-3 professional Mixed Martial Arts record to the event and is currently riding an eight fight win streak, with all wins coming via technical knock-out. His last loss came to the highly ranked Daniel Cormier back in November 2010.

Based out of Perth, Western Australia, this will be Palelei's second opportunity in the UFC after previously being signed for the organisation back in 2007. Back then Palelei lost to Eddie Sanchez at UFC 79 before being given his walking papers. Palelei also competed in Pride Fighting Championships where he was on track to win a decision over Mu Bae Choi until the South Korean opponent submitted him with five seconds remaining in the contest.

Palelei has notable wins over Christian Wellisch, Brad Morris, Yusuke Kawaguchi, Bob Sapp and most recently against Sean McCorkle. The 35 year-old last year turned back a multi-fight contract with One Fighting Championships in an endeavour to get another chance in the UFC.

His slated opponent Stipe Miocic will be looking to get his career back on track after last losing to Stefan Struve back in September.