Two title fights headline UFC 197 on April 23

March 2, 2016

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Two title fights headline UFC 197 on April 23



Las Vegas – Two world titles will be on the line when UFC® returns to Las Vegas, as the only two champions in the light heavyweight division over the last five years will once again collide when champion Daniel Cormier defends his title against bitter rival Jon Jones in the main event of UFC 197®: CORMIER vs. JONES 2. The co-main event features the only champion in flyweight history, Demetrious Johnson, and Olympic gold medalist Henry Cejudo in a 125-pound title showdown. The event takes place in Las Vegas on Saturday, April 23 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena.

When Cormier (17-1, fighting out of San Jose, Calif.) and Jones (21-1, fighting out of Endicott, N.Y.) meet for the second time, there will be more than a world title on the line. Cormier is looking to cement his place as the undisputed light heavyweight champion in the world and avenge the only loss of his professional career. Jones makes his return with his sights set on the belt he never lost in the Octagon. The former champion, who is widely regarded as one of the best fighters in the history of the sport, looks to prove he’s still the best in the world and take what he feels is rightfully his.

In the co-main event, Johnson (22-2-1, fighting out of Parkland, Wash.) will put his flyweight title on the line for the eighth time against undefeated No. 3 contender Cejudo (10-0, fighting out of Phoenix, Ariz.). “Mighty Mouse” is one of the most dominant champions in UFC history, ranked No. 2 on the pound-for-pound list, and a win would tie him for third all-time with Jon Jones with eight consecutive title defenses. Cejudo became the youngest American wrestler to win a gold medal at 21 years old at the 2008 Games in Beijing. A win against Johnson would cement his place as one of the best combat sports athletes in the world.

Also, two of the lightweight division’s most exciting athletes clash as former world champion and current No. 3 Anthony “Showtime” Pettis (18-4, fighting out of Milwaukee, Wisc.) meets No. 8 Edson Barboza (16-4, fighting out of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil). The two striking sensations have combined for 20 knockouts and some of the flashiest and most lethal kicks in mixed martial arts. An early contender for Fight of the Night, both Pettis and Barboza are looking for a big win to put them closer to the top of arguably the most stacked division in the sport.

Additional bouts:

· One of the middleweight division’s top prospects, No. 8 Robert Whittaker (16-4, fighting out of Sydney, Australia) collides with seasoned veteran No. 13 Rafael Natal (21-6-1, fighting out of New York, N.Y.).

· Two of the featherweight division’s brightest young prospects meet as Yair Rodriguez (7-1, fighting out of Chicago, Ill.) and Andre Fili (15-3, fighting out of Sacramento, Calif.) look to continue their climb up the 145-pound ladder.

· No. 13 Jessica Aguilar (19-5, fighting out of Coconut Creek, Fla.) and No. 12 Juliana Lima (8-2, fighting out of Belo Horizonte, MG Brazil) meet in a battle of top strawweight contenders.

· Standout strikers Marcos Rogerio De Lima (13-4-1, fighting out of Sao Paulo, Brazil) and Clint Hester (11-5, fighting out of Atlanta, Ga.) clash in a middleweight bout.

· Undefeated lightweight prospect James Vick (7-0, fighting out of Fort Worth, Texas) meets versatile Brazilian Glaico Franca (14-3, fighting out of Balneario Camboriu, Santa Catarina, Brazil).

· Submission specialist Efrain Escudero (25-10, fighting out of Tempe, Ariz.) meets Las Vegas’ own Kevin Lee (11-2, fighting out of Las Vegas, Nev.) in a 155-pound bout.

· Dynamic finisher Danny Roberts (12-1, fighting out of Boca Raton, Fla.) and knockout artist Dominique Steele (14-6, fighting out of Cincinnati, Ohio.) face off in a welterweight clash.

Tickets for UFC 197®: CORMIER vs. JONES 2 go on sale Friday, March 4 at 10 a.m. PT and are priced at $850, $600, $400, $300, $200 and $100 (prices do not include applicable service charges and handling fees). Tickets are available for purchase online at www.ticketmaster.com and by phone at (800) 745-3000. Ticket sales are limited to eight (8) per person.

UFC Fight Club® members will have the opportunity to purchase tickets Wednesday, March 2 at 10 a.m. PT via the website www.ufcfightclub.com. A special Internet ticket pre-sale will be available to UFC newsletter subscribers Thursday, March 3 starting at 10 a.m. PT. To access this presale, users must register for the UFC newsletter through UFC.com.

UFC197®: CORMIER vs. JONES 2 will be available live on Pay-Per-View on Saturday, April 23 at 10 p.m. ET/7 p.m. PT on UFC.TV, iN DEMAND, DirecTV, DISH Network, Vubiquity, and in Canada on BellTV, Rogers, Shaw Communications, Sasktel, and Canal Indigo for a suggested retail price of $49.99 US/CAN for Standard Definition and $59.99 US/CAN for High-Definition.

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