Jon Jones will make a quick turnaround to defend his light heavyweight title against Anthony Smith at UFC 235.
The polarizing MMA celebrity closed out the year of 2018 with a third-round TKO of Alexander Gustafsson at UFC 232, reclaiming the 205-pound hardware.
UFC 235 will take place at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas. Jones was originally set to rematch Gustafsson in Sin City before licensing issues forced Dana White and Co. to jettison the entire show to Inglewood, California.
Jones’ latest win improved his impeccable record to 23-1.
In sharp contrast, Smith’s ledger includes 13 losses. But the challenger is undefeated since rising to the light heavyweight category following a decade fighting at middleweight.
Last year, alone, the 30-year-old Smith earned three stoppage victories, including knockouts over former UFC champions Rashad Evans and “Shogun” Rua. He also earned his third Performance of the Night by way of a Round 3 submission win over Volkan Oezdemir.
The matchup represents the 11th title defense of Jones’ 10-year career.
UFC 235 is scheduled for March 2, and already features a handful of prominent names like Tyron Woodley, Ben Askren, Cody Garbrandt and Holly Holm.