UFC 211 is increasingly looking like one of the cards of the year as the May PPV event added two more top contender bouts to its line-up including the return of a former UFC champion.

Initially reported by ESPN’s Brett Okamoto before being confirmed by the promotion itself, Eddie Alvarez will take on Dustin Poirier in his first fight since losing the lightweight championship to Conor McGregor at UFC 205.

Alvarez (28-5) is currently 3-2 since joining the UFC but managed to claim the promotion’s 155 lbs title after defeating Rafael dos Anjos via a first round TKO in July of last year. ‘The Underground King’ has notable wins over the likes of Anthony Pettis, Gilbert Melendez, Michael Chandler and Shinya Aoki.

Poirier (21-5) meanwhile will head into UFC 211 on the back of a unanimous decision over Jim Miller which saw the fight earn a ‘Fight of the Night’ bonus at UFC 208. Since losing to Conor McGregor in 2014, Poirier returned to the lightweight division and has since gone 5-1 with his sole loss coming at the hands of Michael Johnson.

In addition to the lightweight contest, another top contender bout has been added to the Dallas, Texas event as flyweights Henry Cejudo and Sergio Pettis will square off.

Cejudo (10-2) is currently ranked #2 in the UFC’s flyweight rankings but will enter UFC 211 coming off back-to-back losses over the division’s champion Demetrious Johnson and a split-decision loss to Joseph Benavidez.

Standing opposite the Olympic wrestling gold medalist will be Sergio Pettis (15-2) who is currently on a three-fight win streak. Pettis last fought at UFC Fight Night 103 where he recorded a unanimous decision victory over former title challenger John Moraga.

UFC 211 has received a setback however as heavyweight Ben Rothwell was informed of a potential USADA violation stemming from an out-of-competition drug test.

Rothwell (36-10) was expected to face Fabricio Werdum on the blockbuster event but with the potential of a second positive drug test on his shoulders, ‘Big Ben’ could be out of action for up to two years.

The 36-year-old released the following statement via his Facebook account following the news:

With the recent news received from USADA I would like to take this time to let everyone know, I have been under the care of a physician and trying to overcome a medical illness. I would appreciate the chance to show that I have not cheated nor did I intended to cheat. Please hold your opinions of me until all the facts are out. I appreciate everyone’s support as I go through the process with usada. Thank you, Ben Rothwell

UFC 211 scheduled lineup now features:

  • Stipe Miocic vs Junior dos Santos – UFC Heavyweight Title Bout
  • Joanna Jedrzejczyk vs Jessica Andrade – UFC Strawweight Title Bout
  • Demian Maia vs Jorge Masvidal
  • Eddie Alvarez vs Dustin Poirier
  • Gabriel Benitez vs Enrique Barzola

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