Side-by-side pic: UFC 159's Chael Sonnen at Light Heavyweight vs 'American Gangster' at Middleweight

Photos by Esther Lin for

Chael Sonnen returns to the Light Heavyweight division tomorrow night (Sat., April 27, 2013), in the UFC 159 main event, challenging incumbent 205-pound mixed martial arts (MMA) deity Jon Jones. Let's compare how he looks in his new class to how he looked at Middleweight in his last bout.

(Click the pic above to enlarge it.)

What a difference 10 months can make for Chael Sonnen, who was already "240 pounds and ripped!" shortly after his technical knockout loss to Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) Middleweight Champion Anderson Silva at UFC 148 back in July 2012.

Indeed, "The American Gangster" made his return to the Light Heavyweight weight class official earlier this afternoon when he tipped the scales at a not-as-sucked-out, more beefy, 205 pounds for his world title fight against division champion Jon Jones in the main event of UFC 159, which takes place tomorrow night (Sat., April 27, 2013) at the Prudential Center in Newark, New Jersey.

No steroids!

Sonnen does, however, have a Mike Dolce, the mixed martial arts (MMA) nutritionist/strength and conditioning guru who is responsible for molding this mountain of muscle. Dolce has predicted big things for his client in the build up to his battle with "Bones," even claiming that Sonnen would "beat the piss" out of him because of his 10-year edge in experience, as well as his preparation for the bout.

However, with all the added bulk comes the added demand for oxygen -- muscles need to breath! It's the double-edged sword that has the potential to derail any muscular fighter, including Sonnen, who has not competed at 205 pounds inside the Octagon since a submission loss to Renato Sobral at UFC 55 back in Oct. 2005.

Your thoughts?

For complete UFC 159 weigh-in results and video click here. And to check out the staredown pics between Jon Jones vs. Chael Sonnen, among others, click here.

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