Jacare vs Blachowicz: Jan Blachowicz and Ronaldo “Jacare” Souza are both former mixed martial arts champions, but neither has held a belt in the UFC. The veteran fighters hope to take a step toward changing that when they meet on Saturday in the main event of UFC Fight Night 164 Jacare vs Blachowicz Live in Sao Paulo, Brazil.
On Saturday night, UFC returns to Brazil for UFC Fight Night 164 from Ginasio do Ibirapuera in Sao Paulo. The card is headlined by longtime middleweight contender Ronaldo “Jacare” Souza making the jump to light heavyweight to take on Jan Blachowicz, one of the top contenders at 205 pounds.
Souza (26-7) is one of the best fighters to have never challenged for a UFC championship, finding himself constantly near the top of the middleweight rankings but stumbling against elite competition. After trading wins and losses over the past few years, he made the decision to test out a change of scenery in jumping into the deep waters at light heavyweight. Two of Souza’s four career losses have come via split decision. Against Yoel Romero at UFC 194 in December 2015, Souza found himself on the wrong side of a split decision most media members disagreed with. His UFC 224 bout with Kelvin Gastelum in May 2018 also didn’t go his way, though there was a dead split among media members over who truly deserved the nod. His most recent fight was a clear decision loss to Jack Hermansson in April.The UFC visits Brazil for the third and final time in 2019 on Saturday for the ESPN+ streaming UFC Fight Night 164 card. In the main event, Jan Blachowicz welcomes Ronaldo “Jacare” Souza to the light heavyweight division.
Blachowicz, who is the No. 6 ranked fighter in the 205-pound division, is coming off a second-round knockout win over Luke Rockhold, while Souza heads into Saturday’s contest with a decision loss to Jack Hermansson in his most recent outing.
In the co-main event, former UFC light heavyweight champion Mauricio Rua looks to continue his resurgent run against Paul Craig. Rua is 4-1 in his past five outings and coming off a third-round TKO win over Tyson Pedro in December 2018. Rua’s recent run is by far the best stretch of fights he has had under the UFC banner. In his first 14 fights with the promotion, Rua never put together two consecutive wins. Craig is 4-4 with the UFC. None of those fights have gone the distance. Craig has earned a post-fight bonus in each of his UFC victories.
Also appearing on the main card is submission ace Charles Oliveira. Oliveira has won five straight fights by stoppage. Four of those victories came via submission. Oliveira faces Jared Gordon in a lightweight bout. Gordon is 3-1 in the UFC and coming off a decision win over Dan Moret. In July, Blachowicz (24-8) rebounded from a TKO loss to Thiago Santos by scoring an emphatic knockout of former middleweight champ Luke Rockhold. Prior to the Santos loss, Blachowicz was riding a four-fight winning streak after seemingly figuring things out in the Octagon after a 2-4 start to his UFC career. He currently sits as the No. 2-ranked fighter in the light heavyweight division in the CBS Sports UFC divisional rankings.
Brazilian legend and former UFC light heavyweight champ Mauricio “Shogun” Rua (26-11) fights in the co-main event looking to improve on his 4-1 record in his five most recent fights. Rua will face Paul “Bearjew” Craig (12-4), who has finished his opponents in all 12 of his professional victories.
Here’s the fight card for UFC Fight Night 164 with the latest odds from William Hill.