At lunch in Manhattan this past January, UFC light heavyweight champion Jon Jones was flipping through photos via an app on his phone. The poster of those photos was Alexander Gustafsson.
At the time, Jones said he was interested in learning more about the Swedish light heavyweight. Jones said Gustafsson seemed like a cool guy, but "I'm still gonna knock him out, though."
It was said in a humorous tone and it drew laughs from the two people in ear shot.
Well, Jones will now get his chance to do just that on Sept. 21 in Toronto when he defends his title at UFC 165.
The UFC made the fight official on Thursday. It is the third time Jones, who grew up and still maintains a home in Ithaca, has defended his title in Toronto. (He submitted Lyoto Machida there at UFC 140 and did the same to Vitor Belfort at UFC 152.
Jones (18-1) tied Tito Ortiz's UFC record with his fifth straight title defense in April with his late first-round stoppage of Chael Sonnen. Jones broke the big toe on his left foot in that fight and is recovering from the injury that almost cost him his title.
Gustafsson (15-1) has won six straight, including wins over Thiago Silva and most recently Mauricio "Shogun" Rua. He pulled out of an April fight in Sweden against Gegard Mousasi with a cut near his eye suffered during sparring a week before the bout.