Dana White made it clear that while UFC champions have a say in who they fight next, it is ultimately not their decision.
Tyrone Woodley knocked down Robbie Lawler after a long layoff and won the UFC welterweight championship. Stephen Thompson, who is on a seven fight win streak, is next in line for a title shot. However, Woodley rebuked his claim to the title and suggested he fights Robbie Lawler while he negotiates a money fight with Nick Diaz or Georges St Pierre.
It looks as though Dana White has put a break on Woodley’s plan. The UFC president told media the following.
“There are other guys deserving of a title shot. Stephen ‘Wonderboy’ Thompson is going to fight for the 170-pound title and then we’ll see what happens with Nick and Nate.”
However, Tyrone Woodley may have indicated on Twitter that he will refuse the Thompson fight. “Funny how there is an official fight announced,” The Welterweight Champion Tweeted. “And I 1) Haven’t spoken to anyone, 2) Agreed on opponent or date 3) Signed a bout agreement.”
It seems like Dana is going to have to negotiate with the next champion. Wonderboy, on the other hand, was delighted to hear the news.
Dana White also spoke about Conor McGregor’s next fight and what is in store for Nick Diaz. McGregor, who fights Nate Diaz next week, did not reveal whether he plans on going back to featherweight during his media interview but reminded his foes that he never missed weight.
“I fully expect Conor to come back and defend his 145-pound title,” White told UFC.com in an exclusive interview. “I think that Nate feels his brother should have the fight at 170, but Nick is not going to come back and fight for the title right away.
Nate Diaz may have a title shot waiting for him as the lightweight champion has shown interest in the winner of UFC 202: “I know Nate Diaz is fighting Conor McGregor and I would like to try and get the winner of that fight,”UFC.com reports. “Hopefully somebody comes out on top there and they sign on the dotted line.”
Dana White advised Conor McGregor not to take the rematch with Nate Diaz; therefore, there is some wiggle room for fighters to negotiate their next fight. However, it is unlikely that Tyrone Woodley will have as much sway as Conor McGregor, who is a more well-known fighter.
Georges St Pierre has shown interest in returning to the UFC and fighting Michael Bisping at middleweight or Tyrone Woodley at welterweight.
Stephen “Wonderboy” Thompson beat Rory McDonald in his last fight. Tyrone Woodley lost a decision to Rory at UFC 174 and many MMA pundits have Thompson as the favorite to win their title fight.
However, at this point it is unclear as to whether Woodley will sign up for the fight. He revealed in an interview that he lacked the motivation to promote his fight with Robbie Lawler. Only time will tell if Woodley will take the same attitude with a fight against Wonderboy rather than GSP.
Dana White also told UFC.com how he feels about the upcoming UFC 202 fight. He compared the hype to Mayweather and Pacquiao. He also states that fight didn’t live to its hype while UFC 196 did.
“If you look at how big Manny Pacquiao-Floyd Mayweather was and how big Diaz-McGregor 1 was – Diaz-McGregor delivered,” White said. “That fight delivered on all the hype and all the excitement and energy, and this one will, too.”
Most MMA analyst believe UFC 202 will be bigger than UFC 200 and potentially become the highest selling PPV bout in UFC history.
Who do you believe will win at UFC 202? Leave your comments below.
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