Craig Jones vs. Felipe Pena booked for UFC Fight Pass Invitational 4

Craig Jones is set to square off with Felipe Pena in the main event of the UFC Fight Pass Invitational 4 on June 29.

A matchup between two of the world’s top no-gi competitors is set for June 29, as Craig Jones will take on Felipe Pena in the main event of the UFC Fight Pass Invitational 4.

And in the co-main event, former UFC light heavyweight champion Glover Teixeira will meet former UFC title challenger Anthony Smith.

Craig Jones vs. Felipe Pena

One of the most popular figures in grappling, Jones is a two-time ADCC silver medalist and co-founder of B-Team Jiu-Jitsu. The match against Pena will be Jones’ first appearance since the 2022 ADCC World Championships where he defeated Joao Costa, Kyle Boehm, and Nicholas Meregali before losing to returning champion Kaynan Duarte in the final of the 99kg division.

For his part, Pena is one of the most accomplished competitors on the scene today. In addition to his multiple IBJJF world titles in both gi and no-gi, he is a 2017 ADCC absolute champion. The Brazilian also competed at the 2022 ADCC World Championships, losing to Nick Rodriguez in the heavyweight division and Tye Ruotolo in the absolute.

Pena bounced back from those defeats earlier this year when he earned a close decision victory over Rodriguez at Who’s Number One.

Although Jones and Pena have never competed against each other before, they do share some interesting history. When Pena was preparing for a scheduled fourth match against Gordon Ryan, Jones briefly joined his fight camp at Atos Jiu-Jitsu. When Ryan pulled out just days before the event, Jones’ teammate Rodriguez filled in on short notice.

Previous UFC Fight Pass Invitational events followed the EBI ruleset, and that’s expected to be the case here.

Stylistically, this should be an intriguing matchup. While Jones is best known for his top-tier leg locks, Pena has proven to have truly elite leg lock defense, having no problems avoiding danger in three matches with Gordon Ryan. 

In recent years, Jones has displayed an ever-evolving wrestling and guard-passing game, and he’ll likely test that game against Pena’s vaunted guard. The Brazilian possesses excellent sweeps and back-takes from the single-leg X position and is a superb finisher once he achieves dominant position.

How to watch: The UFC Fight Pass Invitational 4: Craig Jones vs. Felipe Pena takes place on Thursday, June 29, and will air live on UFC Fight Pass (subscription required).

Ben Coate

Ben has been involved with grappling, whether through wrestling or Brazilian jiu-jitsu, essentially his entire life. After wrestling throughout his childhood, Ben found Brazilian jiu-jitsu as a young adult and quickly fell in love. He has been training for over ten years and currently holds the rank of brown belt, and remains involved in both the MMA and BJJ scene. Ben has been writing about combat sports since 2017. He has interviewed and profiled some of MMA's biggest stars, including multiple UFC champions.

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