Aaron Riley (top), a 43-fight veteran, has experience on his side. | Photo: Dave Mandel
“The Ultimate Fighter” Season 13 winner Tony Ferguson will lock horns with the well-traveled Aaron Riley in a lightweight duel at UFC 135 “Jones vs. Rampage” on Sept. 24 at the Pepsi Center in Denver. Nine fights are now official for the event, which will air live on pay-per-view.
Ferguson (11-2, 1-0 UFC) will carry a four-fight winning streak into the match. The 27-year-old Californian last appeared at “The Ultimate Fighter 13” Finale in June, when he knocked out Ramsey Nijem in a little less than four minutes at the Palms Casino Resort in Las Vegas. Only two of Ferguson’s 13 professional bouts have reached the judges. He was a two-time collegiate All-American wrestler at Grand Valley State University in Michigan.
Riley (30-12-1, 3-4 UFC) has posted five wins in his last seven outings. The 30-year-old Tell City, Ind., native last competed at UFC 114 in May 2010, when he defeated Joe Brammer by unanimous decision at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas. Known for his durability and tenacity, Riley has secured 19 of his 30 career victories by knockout, technical knockout or submission.
A five-round light heavyweight title bout between reigning 205-pound champion Jon Jones and former titleholder Quinton “Rampage” Jackson will headline UFC 135. Other featured matchups include a heavyweight battle pairing the unbeaten Travis Browne with Rob Broughton, a lightweight duel pitting former Pride Fighting Championships titleholder Takanori Gomi against “The Ultimate Fighter” Season 5 winner Nate Diaz and a heavyweight tilt matching Ben Rothwell with Mark Hunt.
UFC 135 “Jones vs. Rampage”
Saturday, Sept. 24
UFC Light Heavyweight Championship
Jon Jones vs. Quinton “Rampage” Jackson
Travis Browne vs. Rob Broughton
Takanori Gomi vs. Nate Diaz
Ben Rothwell vs. Mark Hunt
Tony Ferguson vs. Aaron Riley
Tim Boetsch vs. Nick Ring
Junior Assuncao vs. Eddie Yagin
Takeya Mizugaki vs. Cole Escovedo
James Te Huna vs. Ricardo Romero
* Matt Hughes vs. Josh Koscheck
* Not Official