Ovince Saint Preux, the UFC’s sixth-ranked light heavyweight, is Albuquerque MMA fighter Jon Jones’ new opponent for April 23 at UFC 197 in Las Vegas, Nev.
Saint Preux (19-7) replaces UFC light heavyweight champion Daniel Cormier, who withdrew because of an injury. The Jones-St. Preux fight is for the UFC interim title.
Jones (21-1) was the UFC champion before being suspended and stripped of the title after his arrest for leaving the scene of an accident in April 2015. Jones was reinstated in October.
Saint Preux, born in Miami to Haitian immigrant parents, played football at Tennessee and fights out of Knoxville.
After learning of Cormier’s withdrawal, Jones made it clear on his Instagram account that he was ready and willing to fight whomever — in either the light heavyweight or heavyweight divisions — the UFC might designate.