Doo Ho Choi

Doo-Ho Choi returns this coming February following three-plus year absence due to military leave

It appears we finally have the return of ‘The Korean Superboy’ Doo-Ho Choi (14-4) on tap, as he’s expected to face Kyle Nelson (13-5) next year at UFC Fight Night 218.

UFC Fight Night 218 is to go down on February 4, 2023, live from the Olympic Gymnastics Arena in Seoul, South Korea.

This is to be Choi’s first fight in over three years, as he was forced to take a military leave following his bout with Charles Jourdain in December of 2019.

You see, in South Korea, you have a choice of whether you want to perform your two-year duty in the military as an adolescent, or you can wait, as long as you do it before turning 28 years of age. Choi decided not to go into the military as a young adult, forcing him to take an extended absence from his career.

This happened to a couple other familiar faces in Kyung-Ho Kang and former two-time featherweight title challenger Chan Sung Jung.

Kang’s last fight prior to his service went down in September of 2014, before he returned in January of 2018 with a submission (triangle choke) victory.

Then Jung’s last fight prior to his service went down in August of 2013, a losing effort in his title shot against Jose Aldo, before returning in February of 2017 to KO top contender Dennis Bermudez.

What’s interesting about this; all three men were out almost exactly three and a half years, they all returned in the first two months of the new year, and the two that’ve already made their returns picked up first round stoppages.

Will Choi keep that trend of first round finishes going upon return?

Then we have Choi’s opponent Kyle Nelson (13-5), who has gone 0-2 since Choi last fought.

Both men have 18 fights throughout their MMA careers, Choi having fought six times in the UFC, and Nelson having fought five times in the UFC. Nelson comes into the bout on a two-fight losing streak, while Choi surprisingly enough lost his last three bouts prior to his military leave, one of which became the 2016 Fight of the Year against longtime top contender Cub Swanson.

Who comes out of this featherweight contest at UFC Seoul on top?

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