Rivals Jon Jones, Rashad Evans Official for UFC 145 Title Tilt

By Brian Knapp Apr 20, 2012
UFC light heavyweight champion Jon Jones and onetime titleholder Rashad Evans have been at odds with one another for more than a year. In a matter of hours, the former friends and teammates will have nothing left to separate them.

Jones checked in at 205 pounds for his five-round title defense against Evans (204) in the UFC 145 headliner on Saturday at Philips Arena in Atlanta. The 10 other men booked for main card duty, welterweight co-headliners Rory MacDonald (169.5) and Che Mills (170) among them, also met their contracted weight requirements at Friday’s official weigh-in at the Fox Theatre.


Sherdog Fantasy MMA: UFC 145 “Jones vs. Evans” Free Fan Pick’Em

Anchored at Jackson’s Mixed Martial Arts, Jones has rattled off six consecutive wins since being disqualified for the use of illegal elbows against Matt Hamill in December 2009. The 24-year-old Rochester, N.Y., last fought at UFC 140 in December, when he choked Lyoto Machida unconscious with a second-round standing guillotine at the Air Canada Centre in Toronto. Wins over 2006 Pride Fighting Championships middleweight grand prix winner Mauricio Rua, “The Ultimate Fighter” Season 8 winner Ryan Bader, onetime International Fight League light heavyweight champion Vladimir Matyushenko and former UFC light heavyweight titleholder Quinton Jackson anchor the stellar Jones resume. He has secured 13 of his 15 professional wins by knockout, technical knockout or submission.

Evans, “The Ultimate Fighter” Season 2 winner, has won four fights in a row since suffering his only professional defeat: a knockout loss to Machida at UFC 98 three years ago. The 32-year-old Imperial Athletics representative last appeared at UFC on Fox 2 in January, when he dominated the previously unbeaten Phil Davis en route to a unanimous decision at the United Center in Chicago. Evans undoubtedly welcomes his return to Philips Arena, as it was the site of his signature victory over Chuck Liddell in 2008.

UFC 145 “Jones vs. Evans” -- which airs on pay-per-view at 10 p.m. ET/7 p.m. PT -- will also feature a heavyweight scrap pairing “The Ultimate Fighter” Season 10 finalist Brendan Schaub (237) with Ben Rothwell (263), a bantamweight duel pitting former WEC champion Miguel Torres (135.5) against fast-rising prospect Michael McDonald (135), a featherweight scrap matching former UFC title contender Mark Hominick (145.5) with Eddie Yagin (144.5) and a lightweight bout between Brazilian jiu-jitsu black belt Mark Bocek (155) and Xtreme Couture Mixed Martial Arts export John Alessio (155.5).

Two hours prior, the FX network will carry four preliminary matchups, as undefeated heavyweight Travis Browne (250) meets Chad Griggs (248), “The Ultimate Fighter” Season 7 alum Matt Brown (171) locks horns with the unbeaten Stephen Thompson (171), WEC veteran Anthony Njokuani (156) collides with John Makdessi (158) and “The Ultimate Fighter” Season 6 winner Mac Danzig (155) toes the line against “The Ultimate Fighter” Season 8 winner Efrain Escudero (156). The two remaining undercard bouts -- Keith Wisniewski (170.5) vs. Chris Clements (169) and Maximo Blanco (146) vs. Marcus Brimage (145) -- will stream live to the UFC’s Facebook page.

UFC 145 “Jones vs. Evans”
Saturday, April 21
Philips Arena
Atlanta


UFC Light Heavyweight Championship
Jon Jones (205) vs. Rashad Evans (204)

Rory MacDonald (169.5) vs. Che Mills (170)
Brendan Schaub (237) vs. Ben Rothwell (263)
Miguel Torres (135.5) vs. Michael McDonald (135)
Mark Hominick (145.5) vs. Eddie Yagin (144.5)
Mark Bocek (155) vs. John Alessio (155.5)
Travis Browne (250) vs. Chad Griggs (248)
Stephen Thompson (171) vs. Matt Brown (171)
* John Makdessi (158) vs. Anthony Njokuani (156)
Mac Danzig (155) vs. Efrain Escudero (156)
Keith Wisniewski (170.5) vs. Chris Clements (169)
Maximo Blanco (146) vs. Marcus Brimage (145)

* Makdessi will forfeit 20 percent of his purse for failing to make weight.

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