The UFC is close to finalizing a big time matchup for the first half of 2021 in the light heavyweight division. ESPN’s Brett Okamoto is reporting that the promotion is close to finalizing a matchup between Thiago Santos (21-8) and Aleksandar Rakic (13-2).
The proposed light heavyweight showdown will take place on the UFC‘s March 6th card. The fight will not be the headliner of this fight night. This is a big fight for the light heavyweight division as both contenders rank in the top four.
Thiago Santos wasted no time in trying to right the wrong of his last performance. Last weekend at UFC Vegas 13, Santos suffered a crushing defeat at the hands of Glover Teixeira. Santos was the big betting favorite going into the fight.
However, Santos had no answer for the ground game of Glover Teixeira. Santos did have some high points in the fight. He wobbled Teixeira badly in the first and dropped him in the third. However, both times, Teixeira was able to reverse the situation and get Santos down.
The former UFC title challenger was making his return after being off for the last year and a half. Santos tore several ligaments in his knee during his title fight with former champion, Jon Jones back at UFC 239.
UFC March 6th
Santos will get the chance to right that wrong, but he has a tall order in front of him. The Rocket, Aleksandar Rakic, has looked sensational since joining the UFC back in 2017.
Since making his debut with the promotion, Rakic has gone 5-1 with the UFC. His lone loss came against Volkan Oezdemir in a split decision. That’s a fight that a lot of people believe Rakic actually won.
In his last fight against Anthony Smith, Rakic’s leg kicks chewed up Smith. Smith was visibly limping in the first round of their fight after taking a couple of clean leg kicks. However, Rakic received some criticism for not going for the kill that night.
Nevertheless, Rakic got the victory which is ultimately what matters. Rakic campaigned for a UFC title shot after the victory, but he still has work to do. However, getting a win over Thiago Santos in March could get him there.