While all the attention on Saturday night will be towards UFC 182 headliners Jon Jones and Daniel Cormier, a highly intriguing lightweight battle in the co-main event could produce the card's best fight of the night. Fan favorite Donald Cerrone (25-6, 1 NC MMA; 12-3 UFC) matches up with undefeated Myles Jury (15-0 MMA, 6-0 UFC), with the winner perhaps in line for a title shot or at least a #1 contender bout.
Cerrone is one of the UFC's most active fighters, but that hasn't translated into a shot at the belt. Jury, for all of his success inside the cage, has flown under the radar as a top lightweight, but this is a huge opportunity for him to solidify himself as an elite fighter in the division. UFC 182's main card airs live on PPV at 10 PM ET/7 PM PT, with prelims broadcast on Fox Sports 1 at 8 PM ET/5 PM PT, and streaming on Fight Pass at 7 PM ET/4 PM PT.
How do these two stack up?
Cerrone: 31 years old | 6'1" | 73" reach
Jury: 26 years old | 5'11" | 73" reach
What have these two done recently?
Cerrone: W - Eddie Alvarez (UD) | W - Jim Miller (KO) | W - Edson Barboza (SUB)
Jury: W - Takanori Gomi (TKO) | W - Diego Sanchez (UD) | W - Mike Ricci (SD)
How did these two get here?
If not for the magic of Robbie Lawler's road to the UFC welterweight title, Cerrone would've run away with "Fighter of the Year" in 2014. He went a perfect 4-0, winning 3 of his fights by stoppage, including a pair of head kick knockouts against Adriano Martins and Jim Miller. Cerrone ended his 2014 campaign with a gruelling, hard-fought decision over former Bellator champion Eddie Alvarez at UFC 178. "Cowboy" brutalized Alvarez with leg kicks, and overcame a tough 1st round to win the remaining two. Once billed as someone who would finish you with submissions, Cerrone has added some serious power to his game that makes him a viable contender at lightweight.
Myles Jury had a rare two stints on TUF, tearing his ACL in season 13 and then losing to Al Iaquinta in season 15. But his post-TUF life in the UFC has been tremendous, and in September 2014 he became the first man to finish Japanese legend Takanori Gomi with strikes. Jury also bested another veteran in former title contender Diego Sanchez, but his best win might be his domination of Michael Johnson at UFC 155. All things considered, Jury's well-rounded game and ability to win wherever the fight takes place makes this match with Cerrone incredibly fascinating.
Why should you care?
Honestly don't know what to tell you if you aren't up for a Donald Cerrone fight. He's been on a tear, Jury gets his biggest test to date, and it will produce fireworks.