Jones vs. Gustafsson: Preview and Predictions for UFC 165's Main Event

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Jones vs. Gustafsson: Preview and Predictions for UFC 165's Main Event
Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

The light heavyweight title bout is going to be one of the most exciting fights of the night at UFC 165 on Saturday as Jon Jones will be taking on Alexander Gustafsson.  

The main event for Saturday night will feature two surprisingly tall fighters.  Jones is listed as 6'4'' and is used to fighting shorter opponents.  Instead, he will be going up against the 6'5'' Swede, who will look to dethrone the reigning champ.

Let's take a look at a preview of the two fighters, followed by a prediction for who will walk away from Saturday night as the UFC light heavyweight champion.

 

Viewing Info

Where: Air Canada Centre, Toronto, Ontario, Canada.

When: Saturday, September 21; main card starts at 10 p.m. ET.

Viewing Info: Available through pay-per-view with your provider.

 

Fighter Previews

Alexander Gustafsson

15-1, 9 KO

There's a reason that Gustafsson is referred to as "The Mauler."

At 6'5'', he is an excellent stand-up fighter.  Nine of his wins have come by knockout, and he uses a combination of speed and strength to drop his opponents. He does a good job with his footwork and moving laterally to gain an edge on his adversaries.

After losing to Phil Davis back in 2010, Gustafsson turned his career around, winning his last six fights.  He has beaten the likes of Matt Hamill, James Te-Huna and Thiago Silva on his way to proving that he's the top contender for the light heavyweight belt.

Despite being an inch taller than Jones, Gustafsson has a reach disadvantage, just like almost every other fighter who has faced the champ.  The reach difference is still 3.5 inches, which could be the difference maker in this fight.

 

Jon Jones

18-1, 9 KO

When it comes to light heavyweights, "Bones" might be the best fighter in UFC history.

Jones took the title belt away from Mauricio Rua in March of 2011. Since then, he's taken down legends and former champs including Quinton Jackson, Lyoto Machida, Rashad Evans and Chael Sonnen.

It's been a very long time since Jones has tasted defeat.  His only loss came in December of 2009 against Matt Hamill, after he was disqualified for illegal blows.  Since then, he's won nine straight fights and looks to be showing no signs of slowing down.

The former college wrestler has a balanced repertoire that makes him lethal against almost all fighters.   He has some power on the feet and excels in the clinch and on the ground to damage his opponents.

 

Prediction

This might be one of Jones' toughest fights of his career due to The Mauler's height, but the reach is still in the champ's advantage.

If Gustafsson can keep the fight on the feet, he might have a shot, even if it's still a relatively small one.  If the fight goes to the ground, however, he's going to be in real trouble.

Jones is simply too strong of a fighter in the Octagon, and he's going to prove that once again on Saturday night.  Only three of Jones' wins have come by decision, and that number won't change as Jones will come away with another big win to retain his title.

Jones wins by third-round submission

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