World Series of Fighting has made two title matches official for WSOF 8 on January 18 from Hollywood, Florida.
In the main event, Justin Gaethje will face Lewis Gonzalez for the WSOF lightweight title, while Jessica Aguilar takes on Alida Gray for the WSOF strawweight belt.
The UFC is also starting up a women’s 115-pound division in the new year.
The five-fight main card will air on NBC Sports Network beginning at 9 p.m. ET. Other announced bouts include Anthony Johnson vs. Mike Kyle and Cody Bollinger vs. Tyson Nam.
“This past year has been incredible for World Series of Fighting, and I’m proud to be able to carry that success over in the start of 2014 with this incredible lightweight title fight,” WSOF Ray Sefo stated. “I know that both of these guys have great wrestling backgrounds, but their striking is so impressive. I can’t wait for this one.”
Gaethje (10-0) was originally scheduled to meet Gesias Cavalcante to crown the inaugural champion, but “JZ” suffered an injury. Gonzalez is 9-0 in his MMA career.
“I think some of my toughest fights have been against wrestlers, and I know that’s where my opponent is strong,” Gaethje stated. “He also has a ton of heart. I see this fight being action-packed from the second the cage door shuts until one of us gets the finish. I don’t think there is any way this one goes five rounds. I see a lot of opportunities for some big kicks and knees, and I give my word to the World Series of Fighting fans that Lewis and I will give them one hell of a show.”
Gonzalez stated he is “honored by the opportunity to get in there and bang for the lightweight title.”
Aguilar sports a 16-4 overall mark, while Gray is unbeaten at 4-0.
“My training is going awesome over here with the best team in the world at ATT,” Aguilar stated. “It’s nice to be recognized as the top strawweight in the world, but I’m looking forward to finally receiving a belt and continuing to show the world why I’m the best. I’m honored and grateful for the opportunity to continue doing what I love to do.”
Gray was an Olympic alternate with the 1996 U.S. judo team who just recently turned pro.
“This all came very unexpectedly, but I knew it was a great opportunity for me to prove that I belong at the top,” Gray stated. “This is going to be my first time on national television, but I’m no stranger to big fights. I’m not going to put too much thought into it. I’m confident in my skills, and when I get in there I will shut everyone else out and go home with the belt.”