The UFC has always tried to put good fight cards together for its live events on “Big Fox,” but until next week’s UFC on Fox 5, hadn’t headlined with a title fight since the first “special pre-TV deal edition” of UFC on Fox in November 2011. That is if Benson Henderson and Nate Diaz can avoid the dreaded injury bug.
That first UFC on Fox event was headlined by Cain Velasquez vs. Junior dos Santos, where dos Santos took the UFC heavyweight title away from Velasquez. That event was prior to the official launch of the UFC-Fox TV partnership in January.
Next week’s UFC on Fox 5 features Henderson putting his UFC lightweight title up against Diaz in the main event. The card also features a top light heavyweight contender bout between Mauricio “Shogun” Rua and Alexander Gustafsson, as well as the return of former champion BJ Penn, as he takes on GSP training partner Rory MacDonald.
It’s a stacked card, but UFC president Dana White says that it wasn’t for any particular reason other than they are always trying to put on the best fights they can on any card.
“The strategic idea is to put the best fights we could possibly put on Fox.”
That’s, of course, if they can buck the trend of the past couple years and keep the fights together. Injuries have ravaged several UFC events, particularly earlier this year, even leading to the UFC 151 cancellation, so White is imploring the fighters to be cautious in the final days leading up to UFC on Fox 5.
“It’s tough to keep a card together. What have we got like a week and a half to go?” White questioned, before adding, “I want to say to all the guys, tone your training down a little bit. Let’s not get anybody injured this last week and a half.”
Stay tuned to MMAWeekly.com for up-to-the-minute UFC on Fox 5 news and fight coverage.