Yes, the UFC has announced that the light-heavyweight contenders will throw down, January 24th in Stockholm, Sweden. Not only that, but the fight will headline UFC on FOX 14, and it will take place in the 30,000 seat, Tele2 Arena.
“This is going to be an epic event,” Gustafsson was quoted saying in the official announcement. “I want more than 30,000 fans to come and witness me win on January 24. Then I’m going to go and get the title! My journey back to the top starts now. ”
“This fight might be on his home turf, but I’m ready to go over to Sweden and prove that I’m the next in the line for the UFC light heavyweight title,” Johnson said. “I’m not intimidated by fighting in front of Alex’s hometown fans. I’m going to go in there and look for the knockout like I do in all of my fights. I can’t wait for this!”
Not long ago, there was plenty of talk that the UFC was going to book this fight, but Johnson was sidelined due to legal issues. Recently, the civil case against the fighter was dropped, and now Gustafsson-Johnson is a go.
Gustafsson (16-2) is coming off a stoppage win over Jimi Manuwa in March, and was scheduled to rematch champion Jon Jones in October. “The Mauler” injured his knee, however, and now Jones will fight Daniel Cormier on January 3rd.
As you likely recall, Jones decisioned Gustafssson in their first meeting last September, in what was one of the best title fights in the promotion’s history.
Johnson (18-4) continues to roll since he was cut by the UFC in 2012, as the former welterweight has won eight in a row. “Rumble” returned to the promotion earlier this year, and after decisioning Phil Davis, Johnson bombed out Antonio Rogerio Nogueira in July.
Gustafsson continues to be the UFC’s #1 ranked contender at 205, while Johnson has moved into the #3 position. Not surprisingly, the UFC has confirmed that the winner of the upcoming fight will advance to a title shot.
The broadcast for the event will get underway at 8:00 PM/ET on January 24th.
So, this is a pivotal match-up between two of the UFC’s best light-heavyweights, and it won’t cost you $50 to watch. That sounds just about right.