Posted by

Author, Screenwriter and Podcaster. Admitted Detroit Lion's Fan. Find me on Twitter: @mannyfonseca

Wanderlei Silva has been away from competing for awhile now, but that's about to change. The former Pride champion just signed a deal with Bellator MMA and is set to make his return on April 17 in Japan.

But it's not going to be in a mixed martial arts bout.

Silva will be returning to the ring by entering a grappling tag team match. The match will take place at the upcoming Rizin Fighting Federeation event at Nagoya's Nippon Gaishi Hall.

Silva's team member hasn't been announced yet, but his app oneness have. He (and teammate) will square off against Kazushi Sakuraba and Hideo Tokoro.

Silva was suspended by the Nevada Athletic Commission until May 2017. A suspension that he plans on contesting in the Supreme Court.

Silva is no stranger to one of his opponents. He has defeated Sakuraba three time under the Pride banner, but those fights were all MMA. He hasn't competed since a KO victory over Brain Stann at UFC on Fuel TV 8. Rizin FF has stated that they are planning for Silve to return to MMA in the future.

As for Sakuraba, he returned from a four year hiatus last December where he lost a one-sided fight to Shinya Aoki via TKO. The legendary fighter only won 2 of his last 9 fights, both in 2009 and by submission.

Hideo Tokoro, 15 year veteran of the sport, made his debut in Rizin last December where he scored his 19th submission victory of his MMA career.