The UFC is back in New Jersey with their upcoming pay-per-view being less than 24 hours away. The show is headlined with light heavyweight champion Jon Jones looking for a record fifth title defense against Chael Sonnen. Before that, there’s still the rest of the main card which features five total bouts.
UFC 159 is tomorrow, April 27, from the Prudential Center in Newark. As always, FightLine will be there with the play-by-play and news that follows.
Below is a breakdown of the 10 fighters who will be featured on the pay-per-view aspect of UFC 159.
Lightweight: Jim Miller vs. Pat Healy
The main card starts with Jim Miller being the hometown favorite. His UFC career has only seen him loss to highly ranked lightweights Gray Maynard, Nate Diaz and champion Benson Henderson. He closed 2012 with Fight of the Year for taking a decision opposite a very bloody Joe Lauzon. Pat Healy returns to the UFC after losing in his only appearance for them seven years ago. Once he cut to lightweight, he tore through Strikeforce. Healy went 7-1 under their name and has won six straight.
Light Heavyweight: Phil Davis vs. Vinny Magalhaes
After six plus months of talk, Phil Davis and Vinny Magalhaes are ready to settle this one inside the Octagon. Davis’ only loss came in a title eliminator to former champion Rashad Evans. “Mr. Wonderful” is 6-1 for the UFC. This is Magalhaes’ second run with the promotion as he was released after a 0-2 start. Four wins out of M-1 changed that and he’s since submitted Igor Pokrajac in his return.
Heavyweight: Roy Nelson vs. Cheick Kongo
Roy Nelson didn’t let either of his two fights last year go past the opening round, beating Dave Herman and Matt Mitrione. In doing so, he has started to gain more attention as a potential future No. 1 contender. Cheick Kongo is back, being away since the summer. After Mark Hunt knocked him out, Kongo regrouped with a decision over Shawn Jordan.
Middleweight: Michael Bisping vs. Alan Belcher
It’s England’s Michael Bisping against the American Alan Belcher in the co-main event. These two have made it clear they don’t get along. The winner here remains in the title hunt, while a loss could be the end of even seeing a championship shot. Both are known in the division, but are coming off major losses. Vitor Belfort got a TKO in January against Bisping and the month prior saw Yushin Okami take the decision to Belcher.
Light Heavyweight: Jon Jones vs. Chael Sonnen
The moment UFC 151 was cancelled Chael Sonnen started his campaign for a title shot. It worked, as Sonnen will return to light heavyweight for the first time in a decade by challenging Jon Jones. The champion will look to break the division’s record when he goes for his fifth title defense. Sonnen enters off a middleweight championship loss to Anderson Silva last summer and Jones submitted Vitor Belfort in late September. The two were recently opposing coaches on The Ultimate Fighter.
For a breakdown of the preliminary card, click here.