The stage is set for Baltimore, Maryland; as one of the pound for pound best fighters in the UFC, Light Heavyweight Champion Jon Jones, will defend his belt against a man on a 20 fight win streak, Glover Teixeira. In the co main event, contendership status will be on the line when Phil Davis welcomes Anthony Johnson back into the octagon. The earliest prelim fights are set to start at 7:30 pm ET on Fight Pass, at 8 pm ET the bouts switch over to Fox Sports 1. the UFC 172 main card will be on pay per view, starting at 10 pm ET.
Jon Jones comes into this fight as the heavy favorite but on any given fight, each fighter always has a punchers chance; and boy does Glover Teixeira have a heavy punch. Glover has 19 finishes in 22 career wins, with 13 of those coming by knockout. The heavy handed Teixeira will be no pushover for Jones, as the light heavyweight champion looks to make his 7th title defense in a row. The UFC co main event involves two more ranked light heavyweight fighters, vying for their title shot as they may have to wait patiently until Alexander Gustaffson gets his 2nd chance at the title against the winner of Teixeira versus Jones. Phil Davis has great wrestling pedigree loaded with an arsenal of submission techniques, as Johnson is another dynamic power house whom carries dynamite within his hands, and feet; when they make contact with any opponent. UFC ranked middleweight contender, Luke Rockhold will take on fellow middleweight, Tim Boetsch. Fellow Lightweights Jim Miller and Yancy Medeiros will square off in the octagon. Featherweights Max Halloway and the rising Andre Fili will kick off the main card on PPV at 10 pm ET.
[C] Jon Jones (19-1) versus #2 Glover Teixeira (22-2) – Light Heavyweight Championship Bout
Glover Teixeira is a bulldog in the cage and will look to press the action with champion, Jon Jones. Look for the contender to try to get inside and use dirty boxing to set up his big right on the champ’s chin; while occasionally looking for a take down to steal rounds. Quite frankly though, Jones is the better overall fighter and is in a class of his own. Anywhere this fight goes Jones should be able to dominate with ease. Look for the champion to use his reach and length, diverse striking will be his key to victory; a lot of mixing of the low and high kicks should come into play and watch for those nasty elbows. Jon Jones earns his way into a Unanimous Decision victory.
#4 Phil Davis (12-1) versus #14 Anthony Johnson (16-4) – Light Heavyweight Bout
Look for Anthony Johnson to come out aggressive quickly as he usually does. Johnson likes to come out and expend his energy in the early rounds looking for the quick finish, unfortunately enough for him though; Phil Davis has never been finished in his career. Wrestling will be the key for Davis, which is usually his game plan every time he steps into the octagon. Davis with weather the storm early in the first round, mix up his striking and grappling well in the 2nd; and then finish off the exasperated Johnson by submission in the 3rd round.
#5 Luke Rockhold (11-2) versus #13 Tim Boetsch (17-6) – Middleweight Bout
There’s no question here that Luke Rockhold is the far superior fighter in this match up. Tim “The Barbarian” Boetsch is a tough grizzled fighter, who has heavy clubs as hands; and the strength of an ox, but it’s just not enough. Rockhold will out duel Boetsch in every aspect of the fight and by the 2nd round, The Barbarian will have enough and get folded by either a kick or punch. Rockhold dominates his foe for a TKO in round two.
#9 Jim Miller (23-4) versus Yancy Medeiros (9-1) – Lightweight Bout
When is Jim Miller finally going to get over that hump as a title contender? Once one of the top lightweights in the division and a force to be reckoned with; has now lost three fights in a row and could be on the verge of finding himself out the door with another loss here. This is do or die for Miller in the UFC and he will figure out a way to stay alive in the division. Medeiros took this fight on short notice, and even though Miller is on a three fight losing streak, the grappling game will be too much for the new step in. Jim Miller by submission, round one.
Max Halloway versus Andre Fili – Featherweight Bout
This may become a fight of the night if both Halloway and Fili come out banging as per usual for the both. Halloway has more UFC experience then his for but Fili has the brighter future and more power. Look for these two to exchange blows and get the fan fare in Baltimore off their feet by the first fight of the main card. At some point in the third round, Fili will catch him and finish this exciting fight. Fili by third round TKO.
Other fights that the MMA Spotlight would like to put predictions on are as follows. Former title challenger Joseph Benavidez finds a way to knockout Tim Elliot, Isaac Vallie-Flagg defeats the “Fireball Kid” Takanori Gomi by a close decision. Ronda Rousey’s 4 Horseman member, Jessamyn Duke, outstrikes Bethe Correia for a Unanimous Decision and Joe Ellenberger lands the lumber on Vagner Rocha and finishes him by TKO.
The Ultimate Fighting Championship will not be back for another two weeks after tonight’s event concludes tonight. Matt Brown will take on the young Brazilian, Erick Silva at UFC Fight Night taking place on May 10th in Cincinnati, Ohio. With a championship on the line tonight and exciting fighters jam packing the 172 stacked event, many fireworks will be had tonight as the Ultimate Fighting Championship takes over Baltimore.
Commentary by Justin Huffman