Former UFC light heavyweight title challenger Thiago Santos is already scheduled to make his return to the Octagon. The Brazilian knockout artist will reportedly take on Austria’s Aleksandar Rakic on March 6.
News of this bout was first reported by UFC broadcast partner ESPN, and later confirmed by MMA Junkie.
This booking comes as a bit of a surprise, as Santos is still less than a week removed from his last fight, having been submitted by Glover Teixeira in the main event of last Saturday’s UFC Vegas 13 card. However, Santos didn’t seem to sustain a ton of damage in that fight, so it makes sense that he’d be able to accept a fight again this quickly.
Prior to his loss to Teixeira, Santos had not fought since a July, 2019 loss to then UFC light heavyweight champion Jon Jones. While the judges didn’t see things Santos’ way in that fight, many onlookers scored the fight in his favor, which is noteworthy given that Jones is widely considered the greatest fighter of all time.
While Santos will be looking to bounce back from the first losing streak of his time in the light heavyweight division, his upcoming foe Rakic will step into the Octagon under much different circumstances.
The Austrian striker recently picked up the biggest victory of his career, walloping former title challenger Anthony Smith to a lopsided decision victory in August. Prior to that, he lost a split decision to Volkan Oezdemir, which many viewers scored in his favor. That setback was preceded by a perfect 4-0 start to his UFC career, highlighted by first-round knockout wins over Devin Clark and Jimi Manuwa.
Who do you think will come out on top in this clash between Thiago Santos and Aleksandar Rakic? Let us know who you’re picking in the comments section down below.