Former Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) lightweight champion, Anthony Pettis, will jump up to the 170-pound weight class to battle one of the division’s premiere strikers in the form of ex-welterweight title contender, Stephen Thompson, in the UFC Fight Night 148 main event on ESPN+ (get your free trial here) this Sat. night (March 23, 2019) inside Bridgestone Arena in Nashville, Tennessee.
Don’t expect many takedowns in this battle of stand-up specialists.
“Karate vs. Taekwondo guy,” Pettis said. “I’ve done Taekwondo my whole life, I know ‘Wonderboy’ comes from a karate background, but we both adapted our martial arts background to fit in the Octagon. His fighting style is beautiful, he’s a hard puzzle to figure out. I’m gonna show the world that weight doesn’t matter. It’s all about skills and I have the skill set to beat this guy.”
Pettis (21-8) has not won back-to-back fights in nearly five years, and was recently put away by Tony Ferguson at UFC 229 in Las Vegas. “Showtime” flirted with a run at featherweight, but found the weight cut way too grueling to continue.
Thompson (14-3-1) has also struggled to win consecutive fights, with losses to former champion Tyron Woodley and top contender Darren Till sandwiched around a unanimous decision victory over Jorge Masvidal at UFC 217 in New York.
Karate vs. Taekwondo … who wins?
MMAmania.com will deliver LIVE round-by-round, blow-by-blow coverage of the entire UFC Fight Night 148 fight card on fight night (click here), starting with the ESPN+ “Prelims” undercard bouts at 5 p.m. ET, followed by the ESPN+ main card start time at 8 p.m. ET.
To see who else is fighting at UFC Nashville click here.