In a new interview on UFC.com, Dana White has put forward his argument why the current No.5 ranked Conor McGregor should be given the next title shot in the featherweight division against the winner of the upcoming Jose Aldo Vs Chad Mendes rematch at UFC 179 in Brazil.
“Here’s the thing: If you go down the list, every one of those guys has fought Jose Aldo already,” White told UFC.com. “Conor hasn’t. So who do you line up next for the champ other than Conor? Everybody else has fought him.”
Technically what White is saying is true, but the No.2 ranked Cub Swanson has built a strong case that he should be given the next shot at the belt after compiling a six fight winning streak in the division. While he has lost to Aldo before, that occured some five years ago back in the WEC days when the Brazilian TKO’d him with a flying knee just 7 seconds into the fight.
While McGregor appears to be getting fast-tracked to the title despite not having faced one of the division’s top contenders, Swanson still has a steep incline ahead of him if he’s to get a shot at the belt, with the word being that he’s now likely to face current No.3 Frankie Edgar in November.
It’s rare that a new star with the ability to capture peoples attention and potentially move the needle in the pay-per-view market emerges on the MMA scene these days though, so someone like McGregor who can talk the talk and walk the walk is a precious commodity for the UFC.
Whether it’s fair or not it’s really no great surprise that he’s being given preferential treatment. Brock Lesnar was given a heavyweight title shot after just one fight in the UFC and White boldly claimed just a few days ago that McGregor could be a bigger star than him.
So, the Irish sensation has the world at his feet right now, but either Aldo or Mendes will be only too happy to get an opportunity to knock him off his pedestal, and if they can’t then maybe he does deserve to have the belt around his waist after all.