Rashad Evans targeting December for return to Octagon

Rashad Evans hopes to enter the cage again before 2014 is up.

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Rashad Evans feels good and wants to return to the Octagon before the end of the year.

The former UFC light heavyweight champion told UFC Tonight’s Ariel Helwani over the weekend in Baltimore that he is targeting his next fight for December. Evans said is he recovering well from surgery to repair a torn ACL.

Evans was supposed to fight Daniel Cormier at UFC 170 on Feb. 22, but had to pull out with the knee injury a week out. Prospect Patrick Cummins, who was working as a barista at the time, filled in and Cormier crushed him inside the first round.

The only person Evans is not willing to fight in his return bout is Anthony Johnson, his Blackzilians teammate. Cormier fights Dan Henderson at UFC 173 on May 24, but said if he wins and earns the No. 1 contender spot, he wants his next fight to be for the light heavyweight title. Alexander Gustafsson is next in line for champion Jon Jones.

Evans, 34, is currently ranked No. 2 among contenders in the 205-pound division. His last bout was a first-round TKO victory over Chael Sonnen at UFC 167 in October.