Diego Sanchez makes bare knuckle debut against ex-boxing champ Austin Trout at BKFC KnuckleMania 3

Diego Sanchez is making the move from mixed martial arts into bare knuckle fighting.

The UFC veteran and former Ultimate Fighter season 1 cast member has officially inked a deal to join the roster at BKFC where he’ll face boxing champion Austin Trout in the co-main event at the upcoming KnuckleMania 3 card on Feb. 17 in Albuquerque, N.M.

BKFC officials announced the matchup on Tuesday.

Sanchez had previously flirted with the idea of doing a bare-knuckle fight following his exodus from the UFC but he ultimately signed a deal with Eagle FC instead. In his debut, Sanchez lost a close decision to Kevin Lee but unfortunately Eagle FC hasn’t promoted any cards in the United States since that last event in March 2021.

Now Sanchez will make the move into bare-knuckle competition with a marquee matchup on BKFC’s biggest card of the year.

Meanwhile, Trout will also be making his first appearance in BKFC after the multi-time boxing champion signed a deal with the promotion in late 2022. Trout has faced a long list of boxing greats during his career including Saul “Canelo” Alvarez, Jermell and Jermall Charlo while holding a win over Miguel Cotto from a fight in 2012.

Trout vs. Sanchez joins a growing lineup at BKFC KnuckleMania 3 with the main event pitting two-division champion Lorenzo Hunt against Bellator veteran Mike Richman.

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