The UFC is looking to book one of the most anticipated rematches in mixed martial arts history at the end of the year, according to UFC president Dana White.
In a text message to ESPN on Wednesday, White said the promotion would like to book a light heavyweight fight between Jon Jones and Alexander Gustafsson at UFC 232 on Dec. 29 at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas. The bout is far from official, but White said he would like that matchup to close out the 2018 calendar year.
"It's one of the greatest light heavyweight title fights in history and I expect the rematch to be the same!!!!" White said.
Representatives for Jones declined comment. Representatives for Gustafsson were not immediately available.
Jones (22-1), who is widely considered the greatest fighter of all time, recently resolved an anti-doping case with the United States Anti-Doping Agency and the California State Athletic Commission. He is serving a 15-month suspension for a failed test, but he is eligible to return to competition as soon as Oct. 28.
Jones and Gustafsson (18-4) met in one of the best, if not the best, light heavyweight title fights of all time at UFC 165 in September 2013. Jones was a dominant champion at the time, but Gustafsson took him to the brink of defeat in a back-and-forth, five-round battle. Jones won via unanimous decision.
They were supposed to meet again in September 2014, but Gustafsson pulled out because of an injury.
In a recent interview with ESPN, Gustafsson, of Sweden, referred to a rematch with Jones as "the only fight that really makes sense right now." The 31-year-old hasn't fought in 2018 yet for various reasons, but he is currently healthy.
This week, Jones also mentioned to RT Sport the possibility of facing Gustafsson in his comeback fight.
"I've been hearing about the possibility that Alexander Gustafsson will be the first person I fight when I get back, which I'm excited about," Jones said. "A lot of people feel like he beat me the first time we fought, which didn't happen. It was close, but he didn't beat me."
A female super fight between featherweight champion Cris "Cyborg" Justino and bantamweight champion Amanda Nunes is slated to take place at UFC 232.