Former lightweight champion Rafael dos Anjos picked up a submission victory over Bryan Barberena last night at UFC On ESPN 42 and then challenged an old rival in Conor McGregor to fight him next.
“I think I have the right to call (out) somebody, and I want to call out Conor McGregor,” dos Anjos said in the Octagon after his victory.
“Seven years ago, I earned this fight beating Donald Cerrone. He came up a division. We were supposed to fight. I broke my foot. But now, here I am. He has a couple months to clear his body of all the shi*t he’s taking, and I’ll see you in July.”
That was a very unlucky moment in RDA’s career as he was on a five-fight winning streak at the time and was coming off his first successful lightweight title defense, which had paved the way for a blockbuster superfight with Conor McGregor, who had just soldified his superstar credentials by KO’ing Jose Aldo in just 13 seconds to win the featherweight belt.
RDA’s broken foot led to him missing out on that massive payday and the chance to potentially change the course of history, with McGregor infamously going on to lose a short-notice fight with Nate Diaz instead.
So there is prior history between these two and would be interesting to know how a fight between the two would go, but dos Anjos has never been a box-office draw or much of a trash-talker, so as in the past he may not feature high on McGregor’s list of priorities for what’s sure to be an attention-grabbing comeback at some stage next year.