After successfully navigating past a tough challenger in Antonio Rogerio Nogueira at UFC 119 Ryan Bader now faces the unenviable task of fighting 205lb phenom Jon ‘Bones’ Jones next.
The news comes from MMAWeekly who suggest that the bout is now earmarked for co-main event status at either the January 1st (Edgar Vs Maynard) or Super Bowl weekend (Silva Vs Belfort) shows.
It was perhaps inevitable that these two would meet, given that they have both been following a similar path of success since first setting foot in the octagon in mid-2008.
Bader now has an unblemished career record of 12-0 with five of those wins coming in the UFC, while Jones has gone 5-1 during the same period to take him to 11-1 overall.
Of course it has to be remembered that ‘Bones’ only loss was by DQ against Matt Hamill in a fight he was dominating until using an illegal elbow, so essentially the two fighters records are virtually identical.
Jones has received more plaudits for his performances thanks to his eye catching, unorthadox style and the manner in which he’s dismantled most of his opponents.
Bader hasn’t enjoyed quite the same adulation and attention but his mixture of wrestling and ever-improving striking has been effective in the cage, as has been proven with recent wins over seasoned veterans like Nogueira and Keith Jardine.
A win for either man is unlikely to cement them a title shot in this stacked weight class, but it would undoubtedly propel them firmly into the mix.