At UFC on Fox 14, Alexander Gustafsson (16-2) and Anthony “Rumble” Johnson (18-4) will do battle to establish the No. 1 contender to the light heavyweight championship title. Via his Twitter account, UFC president Dana White exuded excitement while promoting the bout between the two fighters this Saturday night.
These 2 BAD ASS fighters will square off this Saturday LIVE and FREE on big FOX to see who gets a shot at Jones title pic.twitter.com/Lns0NTUQqE
— Dana White (@danawhite) January 20, 2015
At UFC 165, Gustafsson fought a hard battle against the current light heavyweight champion, Jon Jones. In a war that lasted all five rounds, the champion eventually bested the 28-year-old via unanimous decision and kept his belt in the process.
Immediately following the bout, the MMA world cried for a rematch between the two athletes. Gustafsson was slated to take on Jones in a rematch at UFC 178, but was sidelined with an injury, which allowed the former two-time Olympian Daniel Cormier to step in for the Swede. However, Jones disposed of Cormier at UFC 182, perhaps establishing himself as the greatest fighter of all time in the process.
This weekend, the pressure is immense for Gustafsson. The fight will take place in Stockholm, Sweden, home to the former light heavyweight title contender. However, Gustafsson is confident in his skills and is certain of his destiny of fighting for the title once more. According to Yahoo! Sports, Gustafsson labeled his opponent “one-dimensional” and looks to route him this weekend.
“I’m a better fighter than [Johnson], I’ve got too many tools for him. He’s a hell of a force, but he’s one-dimensional. Doesn’t move a lot. Comes in hard, throws the left kick, left hook, straight right … not afraid of his wrestling at all. I’ll cover my face up, not going to let him hit me. I need to bring my A-game and I will.”
However, Johnson is on an eight-fight winning streak and has never been knocked out. He sports heavy hands, as 12 of his 18 wins have come via knockout. His list of victories consists of MMA veterans and a former world champion in Antonio Rogerio Nogueria, Phil Davis, and Andrei Arlovski.
On January 24, according to Fox Sports, Johnson plans on performing “ten times better” than he did in his previous fights.
“You can only be as good as your last performance so hopefully I’m ten times better than I was when I fought Phil [Davis], and [Antonio Rogerio] Nogueira. So, hopefully January 24 I’m like Superman. But, we’ll see. When you’re fighting a guy like Gustafsson, you just never know what’s going to happen. When you’re fighting a guy like me, you just never know what’s going to happen.”
Irrespective of the outcome, the winner will advance on to face the polarizing, yet most innovative 205-pound champion in modern time, in what will more than likely represent one of the most anticipated matchups of 2015.
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