It isn’t the grudge match between Jon Jones and Rashad Evans that everyone was looking forward to, but the UFC 140 main event still carries with it plenty of intrigue.
Jones will be putting his UFC light heavyweight title on the line for the second time against the third former champ he’ll have faced this year in Lyoto “The Dragon” Machida. Having taken out Quinton “Rampage” Jackson and Mauricio “Shogun” Rua already, Jones is poised to establish himself as one of the very best light heavyweights ever.
“After his performance against Rampage, there’s no doubt that Jon Jones is one of the top pound-for-pound fighters in the sport,” said UFC President Dana White recently. “He’s already beaten Shogun and Rampage this year and now he gets Machida, a former champion. Machida is one of the most elusive and dangerous strikers in the UFC and he’s motivated to get the belt back. We’re giving the fans in Toronto a really great title fight.”
For his part, the 24-year-old champion is excited to face as decorated a competitor as Machida in a venue so close to his hometown. The fight will be taking place at the Air Canada Centre in Toronto, Ontario, which is just a short drive from Bones’ childhood home.
“I am thrilled to be fighting Lyoto Machida at UFC 140 in Toronto, which is just a few hours from my hometown, Endicott, N.Y.,” Jones said. “He is an incredibly skilled fighter and one who poses numerous challenges inside the Octagon. He has only been defeated twice in his career and is coming off a big victory in April. For me, it will be important to just continue to focus on making myself better as a fighter, and keeping the fight at my intensity and aggression levels. It is my goal to become the first UFC fighter to defeat three former champions in one year.”
UFC 140: Jones vs. Machida goes down on December 10.