UFC

Rockhold-Philippou headlines Jan. UFC Fight Night

Former Strikeforce champ Luke Rockhold faces Costa Philippou on Jan. 15.
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Mike Chiappetta

Mike Chiappetta has documented the fast-growing sport of mixed martial arts since 2006 for news organizations including SB Nation, NBCSports.com, FIGHT! Magazine, AOL and ESPN. He appears regularly as an analyst on countless television shows and radio programs, including CBS Radio and MMA Beat. Follow him on Twitter.

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Luke Rockhold and Costa Philippou will headline the UFC’s return to the Atlanta area when they square off at the Arena at Gwinnett Center on Jan. 15.

The UFC Fight Night event, which will air on FOX Sports 1, was announced by UFC president Dana White in the aftermath of UFC 167.

Both fighters are ranked in the UFC’s top 10 but coming off losses.

Rockhold, No. 6 in the latest poll, ran into the buzzsaw that is Vitor Belfort in his last time out, losing via knockout back in May. The bout was Rockhold’s first in the promotion after coming over from Strikeforce, where he was the middleweight champion.

The 29-year-old American Kickboxing Academy product is 10-2 overall.

Meanwhile, Philippou (12-3, 1 no contest) is coming off a wrestling-heavy defeat at the hands of Francis Carmont at UFC 165. That loss snapped a five-fight win streak.

Earlier Saturday, FOX Sports reported that bouts including Cole Miller vs. Sam Sicilia and T.J. Dillashaw vs. Mike Easton will also take place on the card.

The UFC’s last trip to Georgia was in April 2012, when Jon Jones beat Rashad Evans in the main event of UFC 145 in Atlanta’s Philips Arena. The Arena at Gwinnett Center is in neighboring Duluth, about 30 miles northeast.

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