UFC 189 goes down this evening from Las Vegas, and the promotion has supplied us with some key notes ahead of the action.
Check out the media notes below. And, as a reminder, FightLine will have live coverage tonight:
POT O’ GOLD
Irish sensation and No. 3 featherweight Conor McGregor is as game as anyone. Even with a last minute opponent change, he will step into the Octagon as the main event of UFC 189 with gold on his mind. He faces Chad “Money” Mendes for the interim 145-pound world title.
Mendes, the No. 2 ranked featherweight, steps in on short notice for pound-for-pound king Jose Aldo with hopes of finally earning the world title that has thus far eluded him.
The only two losses of Mendes’ career have come at the hands of Aldo, while McGregor is riding a 13-fight win streak. While you can’t deny the fact that the feud between Aldo and McGregor is one of the most intense, if not the most intense, in UFC history the brash Irishman has also taken aim at Mendes.
There is no love lost between these two and any way you look at it, a rivalry will be settled on July 11.
LAWLER TAKES ON MacDONALD IN TITLE DOUBLEHEADER
Newly crowned welterweight champion Robbie Lawler makes his first title defense against No. 2 Rory MacDonald in the co-main event of the evening.
Lawler handed MacDonald his only loss in the last five years at UFC 167 in November 2013, and then went on to defeat top-ranked contenders Jake Ellenberger and Matt Brown before taking the 170-pound title from Johny Hendricks at UFC 181.
MacDonald has since rattled off three straight wins over Demian Maia, Tyron Woodley and Tarec Saffiedine to secure his long-awaited title shot and rematch with the champ.
INTERNATIONAL PRESENCE FITTING OF INTERNATIONAL FIGHT WEEK
A total of nine countries outside the US will be represented on the card by 12 different fighters.
As people from all over the world descend upon Las Vegas for the biggest week of the year, fans will get a chance to see fighters from Ireland (McGregor, Pendred, Seery); Brazil (Almeida); Canada (MacDonald); Iceland (Nelson); England (Pickett); Thailand (Swick); The Dominican Republic (Garcia); Mexico (Briones) and Cuba (Cedeno) go to work inside the Octagon. As the sport continues to grow globally, the annual International Fight Week takes on an even bigger role in UFC’s global expansion.
TAKES PLACE DURING HISTORIC INTERNATIONAL FIGHT WEEK
UFC 189 will be taking place during UFC International Fight Week. The week will include many different events for fans to partake in; including pool parties, charity auction events, the UFC Fan Expo, a free concert by the Dropkick Murphys at Fremont Street Experience, the Ulti-Man 5K and the UFC Hall of Fame Induction.
One of the most prominent events taking place will be the historic Reebok Kit Unveil in which the world will finally see the new UFC fighter look. The week will be capped off with The Ultimate Fighter Finale on Sunday July 12.