December 18, 2008

Just over a week away from the Ultimate Fighting Championship's year-end event, UFC 92, the card has undergone a change as heavyweight Mike Wessel will step in on short notice to fight Antoni Hardonk in an undercard bout for the Dec. 27 show.

The announcement was made on the UFC's official website on Wednesday.

Hardonk's original opponent, Mark Burch, dropped out of the fight with an undisclosed injury and Wessel steps in to take his place and his UFC debut.

"You only get a handful of opportunities in life and this one is rare for most fighters," Wessel told of his unexpected shot to fight at UFC 92, but feels prepared for it. "I train everyday like I have a fight coming."

Wessel is a top up and coming heavyweight who trains with the Westside Fight Team in Arkansas alongside The Ultimate Fighter Season 8 cast-member RoliDelgado.

He previously served as the strength and conditioning coach for the Arkansas Razorbacks, and has competed in other MMA organizations such as the "Art of War."

UFC 92 takes place on Dec. 27 in Las Vegas and features a trio of main events including the light heavyweight title fight between champion Forrest Griffin and No. 1 contender Rashad Evans, interim heavyweight titleholder Antonio RodrigoNogueira defending against Frank Mir, and Wanderlei Silva in his third bout with Quinton "Rampage" Jackson.

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