At UFC 172, light heavyweight champion Jon Jones will attempt to defend his belt a seventh consecutive time in a bout with Glover Teixeira.
By beating the Brazilian, Jones would move within three wins of tying former middleweight champion Anderson Silva for a UFC record of 10 straight title defenses. He'd also be two victories away from tying Georges St-Pierre for second in that category.
|Jon Jones||Light Heavyweight||6|
|Tito Ortiz||Light Heavyweight||5|
With a 5-0 record since joining the UFC roster, Teixeira is among the heaviest hitters to face Jones. The champion has beaten opponents with similar skills, but Teixeira only needs to land once to bring a shocking end to Jones' reign over the 205-pound division.
While Jones and Teixeira will be fighting for the greatest prize in MMA, some other competitors could simply be battling for their UFC lives this weekend. Here are the fighters who are sitting on hot seats heading into UFC 172, which will be held in Baltimore on Saturday.
"Rumble" will make his return to the Octagon against Phil Davis.
With a win, Anthony Johnson could instantly become a contender in the light heavyweight division. On the other hand, Johnson will be on a short leash when it comes to weigh-in problems.
Failing to make weight on three occasions during his first UFC run, Rumble was released following a loss to Vitor Belfort in January 2012. Now competing at 205 pounds, the former welterweight will have no excuses if he finds a way to miss the mark at Friday's UFC 172 weigh-ins.
If Johnson runs into any issues with the scale, he'll be in a must-win situation.
Since Yancy Medeiros stepped up on short notice to replace Bobby Green and meet Jim Miller on the UFC 172 main card, his UFC roster spot is very likely safe regardless of the result on Saturday.
Still, he does not have an official UFC win on his record. The Hawaiian rebounded from a loss in his UFC debut by stopping Yves Edwards with strikes. However, a failed drug test took that victory away.
During The MMA Hour on MMAFighting.com, Medeiros told Ariel Helwani he quit smoking marijuana. However, any more mishaps outside the Octagon could put him on thin ice with UFC brass.
As long as he plays by the rules, this should be a no-lose weekend for him. He just needs to go about his business and hope to shock the world inside the Octagon rather than making the headlines for non-competition actions.
Barring another fighter making a dumb mistake, Charlie Brenneman might be the only fighter in jeopardy based on actual MMA performances.
The Spaniard is 1-4 in his past five UFC bouts. He recently suffered a submission loss to Beneil Dariush in his Octagon return, landing only five strikes before being forced to tap.
Once on the verge of title contention with an upset win over Rick Story, Brenneman is now fighting to prove he belongs on the UFC roster.
Since Danny Castillo is actually a step up in competition from Dariush, Brenneman would seemingly get a third chance to pick up a win during this UFC stint, should he come up short on Saturday. That said, he'll need to show something against Castillo. He can't afford to get steamrolled again, or UFC matchmakers may not see the point in giving him another opportunity.