The Ultimate Fighting Championship is gearing up for a big weekend, with UFC 239 set for Saturday at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas.
The event will be headlined by a bout between Jon Jones and Thiago Santos for the light heavyweight title.
Jones, once the poster child for the UFC, has seen his career derailed due to numerous suspensions. He was first suspended and stripped of his championship belt after being connected to a hit-and-run incident in Albuquerque, New Mexico, in 2015.
In 2016, Jones was suspended for a year by the US Anti-Doping Agency and the Nevada Athletic Commission and stripped of his belt for a second time after a potential doping violation.
Jones would return to the ring in 2017 and recapture the light heavyweight championship against Daniel Cormier at UFC 214. However, he was stripped of his championship and suspended for a third time after testing positive for a steroid.
Jones returned at UFC 232, where he defeated Alexander Gustafsson and won the vacant light heavyweight title, which he is putting on the line against Santos. Jones is the favorite in this match, and he could move on to the heavyweight division if he defeats Santos. Santos has the power to stop Jones, and he has won his past four fights, three by knockout.
Co-headlining is a match between UFC Women’s featherweight champion Amanda Nunes and former champion Holly Holm.
Nunes is the reigning champion in both the bantamweight and featherweight divisions, and she is the first woman in UFC history to hold the two titles simultaneously.
Holm is best known as the first woman to defeat former UFC superstar Ronda Rousey. Rousey dominated the women’s featherweight and bantamweight divisions for years before losing to Holm at UFC 193.
Though Holm is not to be overlooked, Nunes has won eight straight fights and is the favorite in this match. Should she defend her title this weekend, it will cement her status as one of the greatest female UFC fighters in history.
Rounding out the main card are bouts between Jorge Masvidal and Ben Askren, finally squaring off after months of trash talk; Jan Blachowics and Luke Rockhold, with former middleweight champion Rockhold hoping to make a splash at light heavyweight; and Diego Sanchez and Michael Chiesa, with Sanchez hoping to keep his two-fight win streak alive.
The main card is slated to begin at 10 p.m. ET Saturday, and it will air on ESPN Plus and UFC Fight Pass.