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Bantamweight Dominick Cruz to return vs. Jimmie Rivera at UFC 219

Former bantamweight champion Dominick Cruz will return from a one-year layoff to face Jimmie Rivera at UFC 219 on Dec. 30 in Las Vegas.

UFC officials announced the 135-pound matchup on Wednesday. UFC 219 will take place at T-Mobile Arena.

Cruz (22-2) hasn't fought since he surrendered the title to Cody Garbrandt in a decision loss in December. The 32-year-old was limited to just one appearance between 2012 and 2015 due to injuries but enjoyed an active, three-fight campaign in 2016.

Fighting out of San Diego, Cruz is widely considered the best bantamweight of all time.

Rivera (21-1) will ride an outrageous 20-fight win streak into the contest, which includes five victories inside the UFC. He specifically called out Cruz following his last fight, a three-round decision over Thomas Almeida in July.

The New Jersey native holds victories over the likes of Almeida, Urijah Faber and Iuri Alcantara.

A strawweight matchup between former champion Carla Esparza (12-4) and undefeated prospect Cynthia Calvillo (6-0) has also been added to UFC 219.