Rashad Evans has been on the sidelines since a late 2013 win over Chael Sonnen, recovering from a knee injury that knocked him out of a planned fight with Daniel Cormier.
As Evans (19-3-1) inches closer to a return, he is targeting a fight with another fellow top light heavyweight contender, Ryan Bader.
After news broke recently that Bader would be passed over for a title shot by Alexander Gustafsson, Evans used “UFC Tonight” to let it be known it’s be interested in facing “Darth.”
Evans told the show that he feels a win over Bader, who has won four in a row, would put him “right back in the mix” for a shot at the gold he previously wore.
Overall, Evans has gone 6-2 in his last eight, losing via decision to Antonio Rogerio Nogueira and then-champion Jon Jones. He’s scored victories over Thiago Silva, Quinton “Rampage” Jackson, Tito Ortiz, Phil Davis, Dan Henderson and Sonnen during that time, including two finishes.
Bader has downed Davis, Ovince Saint Preux, Rafael Cavalcante and Anthony Perosh via decision since a 2013 loss to Glover Teixeira. He sports a 7-2 mark over his last nine, with the other defeat being to Lyoto Machida.