UFC Vegas 8: Smith vs Rakic - All you need to know

Here's what at stake as former light heavyweight championship challenger Anthony Smith takes on Aleksandar Rakic in UFC Vegas 8 at Nevada.

Anthony Smith will take on Aleksandar Rakic at the UFC Apex in Las Vegas, Nevada.   -  TWITTER

A fight between featherweight title contenders Yair Rodriguez and Zabit Magomedsharipov was supposed to headline UFC Vegas 8 aka Fight Night 175 on August 29, Saturday (9 PM according to ET).

However, #5 Rodriguez suffered an ankle injury earlier this month and pulled out of the bout. This resulted in #3 Magomedsharipov's withdrawal from the Nevada event as well.

The Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) then put together a makeshift main event featuring former light heavyweight championship challenger Anthony Smith and Aleksandar Rakic, the #8 contender in the division.

With Jon Jones vacating the UFC light heavyweight belt to make a move up to the heavyweight division, every single top-5 contender will be looking to stake a claim for the vacant title which was last defended at UFC 247 in February 2020.

Competition is the key in sports  

Smith had unsuccessfully challenged Jones at UFC 235 in March 2019. After that fight, he has beaten former #1 contender Alexander Gustafsson and lost to Glover Teixeira, who is currently ranked #4 in the light heavyweight division. 

​A victory over Rakic at the UFC Apex in Las Vegas will take Smith back into the title picture, with a second bout versus Teixeira or first one against #3 Jan Blachowicz possible.

Meanwhile, Rakic is coming off a loss to #7-ranked Volkan Oezdemir at UFC Fight Night 165 in December 2019 and he will be desperate for a turnaround in the division.

The co-main encounter will pit former UFC welterweight champion, Robbie Lawler, against top-15 contender Neil Magny. Lawler is ranked #13 in the welterweight division right now, while Magny occupies the #14 spot.

A win for either fighter in this clash could potentially make that person one of the future challengers for #12 Nate Diaz in a high-profile bout which would guarantee him a big payday and main-event status. Diaz had last fought Jorge Masvidal for the BMF championship at UFC 244 in November 2019.

The remaining bouts on the main card include a women's flyweight contest featuring Ji Yeon Kim and Alexa Grasso. Kim and Grasso are ranked #14 in the women's flyweight and strawweight divisions respectively and the latter will move up a division.

On the other hand, former featherweight championship challenger Ricardo Lamas will face Bill Algeo on the night and ranked light heavyweight contender Magomed Ankalaev will go head-to-head with Ion Cutelaba to open the main card. 

When is UFC Vegas 8: Smith vs Rakic (according to IST)?

The event will be telecast live on August 30 (August 29 in the United States), Sunday, in India.

Where is UFC Vegas 8 taking place?

It is taking place at the UFC Apex in Las Vegas, Nevada.

What time does the main card begin?

The event's main card will begin at 6:30 am IST (August 30).

Which TV channel will broadcast UFC Vegas 8 live in India?

You can watch the bouts live on Sony TEN 2 and Sony TEN 3 in India.

Where will UFC Vegas 8 be streamed live online?

Sony LIV will provide live online streaming for the event.

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