a UFC 174 is Saturday night and the undisputed flyweight champion of the world will try to hold on to his belt, while remaining the only man in UFC history to hold a belt in the young division’s history. Demetrious Johnson (19-2-1) will take on Dagestani native Ali Bagautinov (13-2). Johnson is returning from a blistering knockout against Joseph Benavidez, in a rematch of their UFC 152 bout which crowned Johnson the inaugural flyweight champion.
Bagautinov is on an 11-fight win streak and will look to unseat the champion in the biggest fight of his career.
The co-main event is a welterweight fight that features two men who have sat on the cusp of a title shot for the past year.
Rory MacDonald (16-2) was shocked with a loss at the hands of Robbie Lawler at UFC 167, a loss which granted Lawler a title shot, and MacDonald a fight with one of the most promising athletes in the division.
That man is Tyron Woodley who has finished all three of his UFC opponents since being imported from Strikeforce. A lone loss to Jake Shields hasn’t deterred Woodley who is widely thought to be a title contender following another win in the Octagon.
Before the co-main event, a light heavyweight fight will propel one man towards the top-5 of the division. Ryan Bader suffered a broken hand in a tune-up fight with Anthony Perosh in which he won. He will try to avoid alternating wins and losses for the fifth straight time and nab his second straight win, which he hasn’t done since a 2012 win over Quinton Jackson.
Across the cage from Bader (16-4) will be Rafael Cavalcante (12-4), a fighter who has never been to a decision in his 16 fight career, including his 1-1 record in the UFC where he served up a TKO against Igor Pokrajac last November.
Countdown videos courtesy of the UFC official account.