A light heavyweight bout pitting Anthony “Rumble” Johnson against Ryan Bader has been announced as the main event of a FOX show for early next year. Both men are ranked among the Top 5 light heavyweights in the UFC and the winner of the contest could very likely find himself challenging for the division’s championship later in 2016.
#1 ranked Anthony Johnson (20-5, 11-5 UFC) failed in his first bid to earn the championship by submitting to current 205 lbs. king Daniel Cormier last May, but has since knocked out the tough Jimi Manuwa in a bout earlier this fall. “Rumble has won 10 out of his last 11 fights dating back to 2012, including a stint outside of the UFC.
Ryan Bader, who is currently ranked as the #3 light heavyweight in the promotion, is on a 5-fight streak of his own and looked to have a legitimate case to make for the next title shot until Jon Jones returned from exile in recent weeks. A victory over Johnson in January will all but guarantee a championship fight for Bader (20-4, 13-4 UFC) in his next outing. Bader’s most recent victory came against former champion Rashad Evans at UFC 192.
UFC on FOX: Johnson vs Bader will take place January 30, 2016 at the Prudential Center in Newark, New Jersey. The evenings co-main event will see ranked welterweight clash as #9 Tarec Saffiedine takes on #14 Jake Ellenberger.