Johnny Walker set for his UFC return in a massive fight against Thiago Santos

Johnny Walker (left); Thiago Santos (right)
Johnny Walker (left); Thiago Santos (right)
Johny Payne

Brazilian UFC light heavyweight stars Johnny Walker and Thiago Santos are set to fight one another at the UFC event that’ll take place on September 25, 2021.

The Walker vs. Santos matchup was reported by TSN Sports’ Aaron Bronsteter after Combate’s Raphael Marinho broke the news. Additional details regarding the UFC event are likely to unravel in the days to come.

The UFC light heavyweight title is currently held by Jan Blachowicz, who is set to defend it against Glover Teixeira next. The Blachowicz vs. Teixeira matchup will take place at UFC 266 (September 4, 2021).

Johnny Walker and Thiago Santos face off in September

Johnny Walker is well-known for his high-risk aggressive fighting style
Johnny Walker is well-known for his high-risk aggressive fighting style

The Johnny Walker vs. Thiago Santos fight comes at a pivotal point in both athletes’ respective MMA careers. The winner will possibly be just another win away from a shot at the UFC light heavyweight title.

On the contrary, the loser of this fight would find themselves out of the title picture for the foreseeable future. They will presumably have to put together an impressive win streak to get back into the mix.

Johnny Walker was widely regarded as one of the top prospects in the UFC light heavyweight division when he made his promotional debut in 2018.

Walker suffered various ups and downs early in his career but had seemingly evolved ahead of his UFC debut. He was undefeated in the UFC and hailed by many as a future UFC light heavyweight champion.

He suffered his first defeat in the UFC, losing via first-round TKO to Corey Anderson at UFC 244 (November 2019). Following this, Johnny Walker suffered yet another loss. He was beaten via unanimous decision by Nikita Krylov at UFC Fight Night: Lee vs. Oliveira (March 2020).

Walker returned to the winning column in his next fight, which also happens to be his most recent fight. He defeated Ryan Spann via first-round KO at UFC Fight Night: Covington vs. Woodley (September 2020).

Meanwhile, Thiago Santos – who took MMA legend Jon Jones to the brink at UFC 239 (July 2019) – is now on a three-fight losing streak. Santos lost a closely contested fight to Jones via a split decision at UFC 239.

Thiago Santos was out of action for several months due to the injuries he sustained in that fight. He finally returned against Glover Teixeira in late 2020, losing via third-round submission at UFC on ESPN: Santos vs. Teixeira (November 2020).

Santos’ next fight, his most recent outing, came against rising star Aleksandar Rakic earlier this year. Santos lost to Rakic via unanimous decision at UFC 259 (March 2021).

Edited by Alex Turk
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