July 30, 2008

Following a four-year absence from the sport, former Ultimate Fighting Championship heavyweight contender Gan McGee is set to return to action Sept. 13 at the XFC event in Tampa, Fla., against Jonathan Ivey.

McGee hit the pinnacle of his career in 2003 when he fought for the UFC heavyweight title against Tim Sylvia. He lost in the first round, and following that fight he lost the desire to focus on fighting.

After the fight concluded, Sylvia tested positive for steroids and while the now former UFC champion did admit the usage, neither the promotion or athletic commission decided to strip him of the win or the title, and McGee took a crushing blow to his career.

"Tim Sylvia is a great fighter and the video tape doesn't lie, he beat the hell out of me," said McGee from his San Luis Obispo training camp. "Did the steroids make a difference? Different people have different theories, I guess. But for me, what hurt the most was sacrificing absolutely everything I had to finally achieve my dream of becoming a world champion, and then falling short. And when it became clear that UFC wasn't going to consider me for a second title shot, my entire world collapsed. I felt like a part of me had just died. It was beyond devastating."

McGee then traveled to Japan to fight for the Pride Fighting Championships where he dropped two straight fights before leaving the sport of MMA all together.

Now focused and back in training, McGee is ready to once again throw his hat in the ring and work his way back up the heavyweight ladder.

"My killer instinct is back, and trust me -- it's never been deadlier," said McGee.

His opponent, Ivey, is an experienced fighter in his own right having fought a number of tough opponents in his career and he's looking forward to welcoming McGee back to the sport.

McGee and Ivey will do battle in Xtreme Fighting Championships (XFC)'s "Salute to Our Armed Forces V" at the St. Pete Times Forum in Tampa, Fla on Sept 13.

The event will also be streamed live on www.mmaxfc.com.

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