UFC 246 is now in the history books, and Conor McGregor is officially back in the winning column. And, as always, the UFC train keeps chugging forward. The promotion is heading to Raleigh, North Carolina, this Saturday, Jan. 25, on ESPN+ with a solid card and a top-five heavyweight billing at the top.
UFC Fight Night: Blaydes vs. dos Santos is a 12-bout card, with the preliminary card having seven matches, and the main card with five. Top-ranked UFC heavyweights headline the evening, #3 Curtis Blaydes and #4 Junior dos Santos. Blaydes had a successful 2019 and is riding a two-fight win streak into his first match of 2020. He earned a unanimous decision win over Justin Willis at UFC Fight Night: Thompson vs. Pettis in March 2019, and a TKO victory over Shamil Abdurakhimov at UFC 242 in September 2019.
Junior dos Santos’ 2019 didn’t go as well as Blaydes’. He won his first fight in 2019 by scoring a TKO over Derrick Lewis at UFC Fight Night: Lewis vs. dos Santos, in March. The victory over Lewis was dos Santos’ third win in a row, and he was catapulted into a top-contender fight against Francis Ngannou in June. However, the man known as Cigano was finished by Ngannou in just over a minute into the first round of their main event fight during UFC on ESPN: Ngannou vs. dos Santos.
Both fighters will meet inside the Octagon, with their focus set on continuing up the heavyweight ladder.
The co-main event will feature a pair of welterweights. Former UFC Lightweight Champion Rafael dos Anjos, who is currently ranked #5 at welterweight, will be taking on Michael Chiesa. Dos Anjos has had ups-and-downs since joining the UFC welterweight roster in 2017. The former lightweight champ has gone 4-3 in his new weight class and is coming off a loss to #4 ranked Leon Edwards.
Chiesa, like dos Anjos, made a move from lightweight to welterweight. He debuted in the weight class at the end of 2018 and has scored victories over former interim UFC Welterweight Champion Carlos Condit and inaugural Ultimate Fighter winner Diego Sanchez. Chiesa will be looking to keep his welterweight record without a blemish and to join the UFC welterweight rankings with a win over dos Anjos.
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UFC Fight Night: Blaydes vs. dos Santos airs on Jan. 25, on ESPN +
Main Card – 5 p.m. PT / 8 p.m. ET
Curtis Blaydes vs. Junior dos Santos – Heavyweight Bout
Rafael dos Anjos vs. Michael Chiesa – Welterweight Bout
Jordan Espinosa vs. Alex Perez – Flyweight Bout
Hannah Cifers vs. Angela Hill – Women’s Strawweight Bout
Jamahal Hill vs. Darko Stosic – Light Heavyweight Bout
Preliminary Card – 2 p.m. PT / 5 p.m ET on ESPN+
Bevon Lewis vs. Dequan Townsend – Middleweight Bout
Arnold Allen vs. Nik Lentz – Featherweight Bout
Justine Kish vs. Lucie Pudilova – Women’s Flyweight Bout
Montel Jackson vs. Felipe Colares – Bantamweight Bout
Sara McMann vs. Lina Lansberg – Women’s Bantamweight Bout
Brett Johns vs. Tony Gravely – Bantamweight Bout
Herbert Burns vs. Nate Landwehr – Featherweight Bout