Light heavyweights Thiago Santos and Jamahal Hill headline Saturday night’s UFC on ESPN 40 event.
The main card airs live on ESPN and ESPN+ from Las Vegas.
Santos and Hill square off in a five-round contest that could help decide a future contender in the division.
Along with Santos vs. Hill, Zac Pauga meets Mohammed Usman in The Ultimate Fighter 30 heavyweight finale and Brogan Walker-Sanchez takes on Juliana Miller in the women’s flyweight finale.
The 38-year-old Santos challenged then-champion Jon Jones for the belt back in 2019. The end result was a split decision loss for Santos, but many left the arena that night believing he had won.
Unfortunately for Santos, he struggled after. A submission loss to former champion Glover Teixeira followed along with a decision defeat to Aleksandar Rakic.
In 2021, he rebounded, besting Johnny Walker, but is coming off a March five-round setback to Magomed Ankalaev.
Still, Santos is a fighter with an incredible resume. He holds wins over Jan Blachowicz via TKO, Jimi Manuwa, Anthony Smith and Kevin Holland.
For the 31-year-old Hill, this is just the kind of fight that could position him perfectly. He is riding a two-fight win streak, finishing both Walker and Jimmy Crute.
Both those wins over Walker and Crute came inside of the first three minutes of the first round. And both times, he earned “Performance of the Night” bonuses.
Overall, Hill is 10-1 with a no-contest, having finished six of his opponents.
Along with the finals in The Ultimate Fighter, this should make for an exciting night of intense and fast-paced action.