Jon Jones-Rashad Evans Title Headliner Confirmed for UFC 145


As expected, Jon Jones will next defend his UFC light heavyweight title against former teammate Rashad Evans.

Promotion officials Tuesday announced the pairing will serve as the main event of UFC 145, which takes place April 21 at Phillips Arena in Atlanta. The event is also expected to feature a pivotal bantamweight confrontation between former WEC champion Miguel Torres and talented prospect Michael McDonald, as well as a heavyweight contest pitting unbeaten Travis Browne against former Strikeforce competitor Chad Griggs.

Jones (Pictured, file photo) captured the UFC 205-pound title in March, blasting then-champion Mauricio Rua at UFC 128. Following the third-round stoppage, “Bones” returned to the cage in September, submitting another former champion in Quinton Jackson at UFC 135. December brought more of the same, as the 24-year-old finished Lyoto Machida, another onetime belt holder, at UFC 140 to close out a stellar 2011.

Evans, meanwhile, has seen injuries slow his path back to a title shot. Another former champ, “Suga” was initially supposed to challenge Rua for the title in March, but was forced to withdraw from that contest, leaving the door open for then-teammate Jones to capture the belt.

Evans returned to the Octagon at UFC 133 in August, knocking out Tito Ortiz, who had stepped in for an injured Jones. The Imperial Athletics representative was rumored to face Jones at UFC 140, but a thumb injury sustained in the Ortiz bout put a stop to those plans. Most recently, Evans outpointed Phil Davis in the UFC on Fox 2 headliner, taking a five-round unanimous decision to earn another shot at Jones and the belt.

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