Jon Jones to face Anthony Johnson in UFC 187

March 2, 2015

With Ronda Rousey stealing all the thunder in the sport of late, Dana White and company have wisely started the process of rebuilding the image of the UFC's male competitors -- especially after a spate of recent failed drug tests -- by putting together an outstanding card for the upcoming UFC 187 on Saturday, May 23, at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas.

The card will feature two world title fights, with undisputed light heavyweight king Jon Jones meeting No. 1 contender Anthony Johnson in the five-round main event, and middleweight champion Chris Weidman facing former light heavyweight champion Vitor Belfort.

Jones (21-1) will be attempting to make an unprecedented ninth successful UFC light heavyweight title defense. Undefeated in his last 12 bouts, Jones is currently tied for second place with Georges St-Pierre for the longest active winning streak, just behind former middleweight champion Anderson Silva with 17.

Jones was one of those fighters who failed a drug test, as he tested positive for cocaine.

He will face a formidable opponent in Johnson (19-4), who in his last three bouts has collected two first-round finishes over former title challenger Alexander Gustafsson (TKO at 2:15) and Antonio Rogerio Nogueira (KO at 0:44 seconds), while also delivering a masterful performance against seventh-ranked Phil Davis at UFC 172.

The co-main event also should be entertaining, as middleweight champion Chris Weidman (12-0) will put his spotless record on the line when he faces the fourth-ranked Belfort, who has been anxiously awaiting his shot at the belt.

After beating former champion Anderson Silva twice, Weidman went on to defend his title in spectacular fashion against former light heavyweight champion Lyoto Machida at UFC 175. The five-round battle earned the pair a Fight of the Year nomination and cemented Weidman’s place in the pound-for-pound rankings (No. 4).

Belfort (24-10), 37, is a former 205-pound champ who has been destroying his competition as of late. Weidman and Belfort have been slated to meet on three separate occasions, and the two will finally go to war on May 23.

By Staff of and news services

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