Over the past few days UFC president Dana White has shed some light on the title implications in both the featherweight and lightweight divisions as we draw closer to the second half of the year.
Firstly, on ESPN’s MMA Live show this week Kenny Florian was co-hosting and took the opportunity to ask White whether he would be in the title picture at featherweight if he beats Diego Nunes in his 145lb debut on June 11th at UFC 131.
“Everybody knows where you stand. You get in there, and if you make that weight, yeah. You’re probably in for the next title shot,” White replied.
It may be a little unfair to the other top contenders in the division, but it makes sense to put Florian right into the mix, and a potential title fight with Jose Aldo, should he win tonight at UFC 129, is uundoubtedly the biggest fight that could be put together at 145lbs at this moment in time.
Florian’s ability to successfully cut down to featherweight is a legitimate concern though, with even ‘Ken-Flo’ himself questioning whether it was possible at one stage. He’s an intelligent fighter though and after consulting with a nutritionist he is now convinced he can make it.
At yesterday’s UFC Fan Expo Q&A, White also discussed what’s likely to come next for the lightweight division after the Frankie Edgar Vs Gray Maynard rematch.
Originally former WEC lightweight champion Anthony Pettis was earmarked for the No.1 contender spot, but the recent form of other fighters like Jim Miller (who’s currently on a seven fight winning streak) has made some people question whether the UFC may be about to change their minds.
According to White that’s not the case.
“No, It’s Pettis,” he confirmed.
Pettis still has a tough fight to come though against Clay Guida at the TUF 13 finale in June before he seals that particular deal though.