Just a day after the UFC announced it would return to Chicago for UFC on FOX 6, the televised card already has started to take shape.
The main event will be the first flyweight title defense of new champion Demetrious Johnson (16-2-1 MMA, 5-1-1 UFC) against top contender John Dodson (14-5 MMA, 3-0 UFC). And a potential lightweight title eliminator between Anthony Pettis (15-2 MMA, 2-1 UFC) and Donald Cerrone (19-4 MMA, 6-1 UFC), previously reported by MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com
), also will take place on the card.
UFC officials on Tuesday announced the two fights on FUEL TV's "UFC Tonight."
UFC on FOX 6 will take place Jan. 26 at United Center in Chicago. The main card will air on FOX with prelims expected for FX and Facebook.
Dodson a month ago at UFC on FX 5 in Minneapolis stopped promotional newcomer Jussier Formiga with a second-round TKO to earn his shot at the champion. Dodson is a former flyweight who had to compete at bantamweight to get into the UFC, and he did so by winning the 135-pound division on Season 14 of "The Ultimate Fighter." Shortly after that fight, he dropped back to flyweight after the UFC introduced the division and beat Tim Elliott by unanimous decision to get into the title eliminator fight against Formiga.
Johnson dropped to flyweight after losing a bantamweight title fight against Dominick Cruz. And against Ian McCall in the opening round of the UFC's four-man flyweight tournament, he fought to a controversial draw in March. The two played it back in June, with Johnson winning a unanimous decision to get to the finals against Joseph Benavidez.
In Toronto in September, Johnson upset Benavidez to win the promotion's first 125-pound title. Then he had to wait a couple weeks to find out whom he'd be fighting when he defended his belt for the first time.
Pettis has been on the shelf since a "Knockout of the Night" win over Joe Lauzon at UFC 144 in February in Japan. Injuries have kept the former WEC lightweight champion on the shelf. But he recently told MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com
) that he expected to be ready to face Cerrone in January. That will indeed be the case. Pettis has won six of his past seven fights.
Cerrone is coming off a "Fight of the Night" win over former teammate Melvin Guillard at UFC 150 in August. That was sixth win in the UFC in just over a year and a half. He started his UFC career 4-0 in 2011 after the WEC merger, but couldn't go 5-0 in the calendar year when he ran into Nate Diaz at UFC 141, losing a unanimous decision.