Light heavyweight champion Jon Jones will make his next title defense at UFC 170 against Glover Teixeira on February 22. The fight will headline a card in Las Vegas.
It was initially announced that the fight would headline the promotion’s Super Bowl weekend event in New Jersey, but UFC President Dana White admitted officials had jumped the gun with that announcement. Jones needed a little more time after his thrilling five-round title fight with Alexander Gustafsson at UFC 165.
Jones set a record with that decision victory in Toronto with his sixth straight defense of the 205-pound belt, surpassing Tito Ortiz. He’s taking on another dangerous challenger in the hard-hitting Teixeira, who is a perfect 5-0 with the promotion, having defeated the likes of James Te Huna, Quinton “Rampage” Jackson and Ryan Bader. His first-round stoppage of Bader at UFC Fight Night 28 in Brazil secured him a title shot.
There had been some concern on Teixeira’s part that he would have to wait a little longer for his shot because of all the talk of an immediate Jones-Gustafsson rematch after their sensational bout. However, Jones felt it was right to give the Brazilian his opportunity and decided against an immediate rematch with “The Mauler.”
Jones is coming off what was easily the most difficult fight of his career, and showed a lot of courage during that physically-draining affair with Gustafsson. The champion delivered in the championship rounds to retain his belt. His only “loss” remains a disqualification defeat against Matt Hamill. Jones was DQ’d for illegal elbow strikes in a fight that he was completely dominating.
Teixeira will be looking to hand Jones his first actual defeat in most people’s eyes. He has the ability to do that with 20 consecutive victories and 19 career finishes by way of knockout or submission. However, “Bones” will easily be the most difficult challenge of Teixeira’s career. It’ll be the tremendous athleticism and diversified skill-set of Jones against the power of Teixeira at UFC 170.
Rick LaFitte is an MMA Writer for Rant Sports