Super Bowl weekend is set to be a big weekend for the UFC despite them leaving the comfort of Las Vegas in years. The card is set to take place at the Prudential Center in Newark, New Jersey, and was already announced to have a heavyweight battle between floundering bruisers Frank Mir and Alistair Overeem. The promotion wanted to have Jon Jones to headline the card opposite of Glover Teixeira, but Jones wanted a little bit more time to recovery after the exhausting battle he had with Alexander Gustafsson. Instead, the promotion has gone with two other title fights that have participants in both that have been waiting a long time for their fights.
In the co-main event Renan Barao will finally have his shot at becoming the undisputed champion at bantamweight. After two long years of waiting, Dominick Cruz will return to the Octagon to defend his title. At this point both fighters have defended their UFC titles twice, but the stigma of the "interim" title has put a lot of detractors into Barao’s camp. He has complained that sponsors are less willing to endorse him because of the tag in front of his champion status, but with this fight he will finally be champion. Even if somehow Cruz is not able to compete it is likely that the title will change hands even without a fight if another injury occurs. Hopefully none of that happens and the fight can finally happen.
In the main event, Jose Aldo will be facing off with a fighter that has been circling him for years. The hard nosed Ricardo Lamas has earned his spot among the featherweight elite with a finish of the Matt Grice, submission of Cub Swanson, first defeat of Hatsu Hioki, and knockout of former number one contender Erik Koch. Originally when Koch fell out of his title fight last July, the UFC was going to pull Lamas from his rumored bout with Frankie Edgar. Unfortunately, that fight did not happen when Edgar took the title fight, and Lamas was kept out the rest of the year until he fought Koch in January. He lost another fight to Aldo when the Korean Zombie was pulled to fight Aldo after Anthony pettis was injured, even though the Zombie had not fought in over a year. Not, it will have been another year since Lamas has stepped in the cage, but this time it will at least be for a title.