MMA Odds and Ends for Friday: Jones/Gustafsson 2 To Headline UFC 178 In Toronto

Jon-Jones Jon Jones and Alexander Gustafsson will finish what they started in the place where their feud began. The UFC announced late Thursday night that the light heavyweight champion will defend his belt against the top contender in the most-anticipated rematch of the year at UFC 178, which takes place September 27 at Air Canada Centre in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. The pair’s first bout, which headlined UFC 165 last September, was a fantastic bout that was won by Jones via close decision. It was voted “Fight of the Year” in 2013 in MMA by most major media outlets and by most fans, and the rematch should be just as good. In the first fight, Gustafssson shocked the world as he was able to take Jones down early and then outstrike him on the feet en route to winning two of the first three rounds. He was on his way to winning the fourth round, too, but Jones smashed him with a spinning elbow that turned the tide of the fight as he rocked his Swedish opponent, stole the round back, and then won round five to seal the deal. Even still, though, there were many observers who thought Gustafsson won three rounds and should have received the belt. The judges disagreed, however, and Jones was awarded the victory via unanimous decision Since the first fight, Gustafsson beat Jimi Manuwa via second-round TKO at UFC Fight Night 37 and Jones smashed Glover Teixeira en route to a unanimous decision win at UFC 172. Jones had expressed interest in fighting top contender Daniel Cormier instead of Gustafsson, but UFC president Dana White and UFC co-owner Lorenzo Fertitta convinced him to fight Gustafsson in the rematch instead, and thus we have this fight taking place this fall in Toronto — the fourth time Jones will have fought in Canada’s capital. As far as the betting line goes, look for Jones to be about a 4-to-1 favorite here, which is half the price he was the first time they fought. Of course Gustafsson was counted out by pretty much everyone the first time around, but this time I think there will be more action on the challenger and I wouldn’t be shocked if the line on Jones was lower than we all think it will be. Regardless, this is going to be an amazing fight and as a Toronto native, it’s a real treat for Jones to fight here again and defend his title. This is going to be a great fight.

Written by Adam Martin.

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