The Ultimate Fighting Championship returns to the States after last weekend’s showing in Sweden with the Philips Arena in Atlanta, Georgia hosting UFC 145: Jones vs. Evans this Saturday night. Journeyman “The Natural” John Alessio (34-10) returns to the UFC for the fourth time to challenge Jiu-Jitsu artist Mark Bocek (10-4). “The Filipino Phenom” Eddie Yagin (15-5-1) will match up against fellow featherweight “The Machine” Mark Hominick (20-10). Heavyweight action graces Atlanta when “The Hybrid” Brendan Schaub (8-2) stands opposite IFL veteran “Big” Ben Rothwell (31-8). The welterweight division is bound for a change in scenery when “Ares” Rory MacDonald (12-1) meets British sensation “Beautiful” Che Mills (14-4) in the co-main event. Closing out the night is a long-awaited fight as friends-turned-foes collide as current light heavyweight champion “Bones” Jon Jones (15-1) takes on another former champ in “Suga” Rashad Evans (17-1-1). Bantamweight action anchors the main card with “Mayday” Michael McDonald (14-1) battling former WEC 135lbs. king “Angel” Miguel Torres (40-4). McDonald has been making serious waves in what is considered a young career while the tested Torres has always been a big dog in the bantamweight division’s yard. McDonald has the weapons needed to get the job done but Saturday night will be presented his stiffest challenge to date.
Before the bright lights shine down on“The Huntington Beach Bad Boy” Tito Ortiz (16-8-1) and “Sugar” Rashad Evans (15-1-1) at UFC 133 for the second time in their careers, the UFC will treat fans to an exciting card stacked to the hilt with veteran fighters. Middleweight fan favorites “The Phenom” Vitor Belfort (19-9) and “Sexyama” Yoshihiro Akiyama (14-4) will fight to get themselves back in the title picture after a pair of heartbreaking losses, “Superman” Dennis Hallman (45-13-2) and the Midwestern brawler Brian Ebersole (40-14-1) will square off at welterweight, and grappling aces “Quicksand” Mike Pyle (21-6-1) and “The Water Boy” Rory MacDonald (11-1) will bring everything they’ve got into the cage. Also appearing on the card are “El Conquistador” Jorge Rivera (18-8) and Costantinos Philippou (7-2), two middleweights who have had the task of rebounding from recent losses made all the more difficult by suffering late replacements in opponents. Rivera, who was brutally KO’d by “The Count” Michael Bisping (21-3) in February, was originally slated to fight “Legionarius” Alessio Sakara (15-8) who had to pull out with a knee injury. Philippou was then pulled from his fight with Rafael Natal (12-3-1), a bout he had already taken on short notice, to replace Sakara.