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Wednesday, May 22, 2013
Updated: May 29, 10:25 PM ET
Josh Barnett back in UFC

By Franklin McNeil
ESPN.com

Former UFC heavyweight champion Josh Barnett has re-signed with UFC, promotion president Dana White confirmed Wednesday with ESPN.com.

According to USA Today Sports, Barnett signed a multifight deal with UFC. The signing ends Barnett's 11-year absence from the promotion.

Barnett, who is currently ranked seventh among heavyweights by ESPN.com, captured the UFC title from Randy Couture on March 22, 2002, with a second-round TKO. Shortly thereafter, however, Barnett tested positive for a banned substance and was stripped of the belt.

He has not competed in UFC since.

The 35-year-old Barnett went on to perform in several other mixed martial arts promotions, including Pride, Pancrase, Affliction and most recently Strikeforce.

In May 2012, Barnett had his eight-fight win streak snapped when he suffered a lopsided unanimous decision to Daniel Cormier in the Strikeforce Heavyweight Grand Prix Final.

Barnett (32-6) rebounded on Jan. 12 with a first-round submission of Nandor Guelmino during Strikeforce's final event.