Dana White On What’s Next For Whittaker, Masvidal and Volkanovski
This month offered us some great title and non-title fights, and as they answered many questions, they raised even more questions. As it is the case after every UFC event, the question on everyone’s mind is, who is next in line for the winners and losers?
Who’s Next For Robert Whittaker?
Last weekend, the former UFC middleweight champion Robert Whittaker made a successful return against Darren Till at Fight Island 3, leading some fans to call for a title shot for ‘The Reaper’.
UFC president Dana White however, would rather match him up with Jared Cannonier, in order to get the number one contender.
“You got Cannonier in there,” Dana said while speaking to ESPN (transcript by BJPenn.com). “Do you do Cannonier versus Whittaker? I mean, that’s a really good fight to find out who fights the winner of Adesanya versus Costa.”
UFC middleweight champion Israel Adesanya is set to defend his title against the number two ranked Paulo Costa at UFC 253 in September.
Is Nate Diaz Next For Jorge Masvidal?
Jorge Masvidal lost his short-notice title fight against the UFC welterweight champion Kamaru Usman at UFC 251 earlier this month.
Prior to that ‘Gamebred’ won the BMF title in a true spectacle against Nate Diaz at UFC 244 this past November. According to many, the fight was stopped too early, and a great number of fans have been advocating for a rematch, including Masvidal himself.
Dana, however, isn’t excited about making it a reality.
“I don’t think you do an immediate rematch. We gotta see how some of these fights play out and see what’s next for [Masvidal],” Dana said. “I mean he’s talking about fighting again after next year. So, you know, still a long ways away and a lot of things can change in that division in the next six-to-eight months.”
Who’s Next For Alex Volkanovski?
Last but not least, identifying the next challenger for the UFC featherweight champion Alex Volkanovski. The 31-year-old took the belt from Max Holloway last December at UFC 245, and then defended it in a rematch with the Hawaiian at UFC 251, winning a razor close split decision.
Many considered Holloway as a true winner of their last bout, including Dana. With this in mind, the UFC president said that he’s considering making the trilogy (transcript by MMA Junkie).
“Well, here’s the thing. Calvin Kattar just fought,” he said. “Yair Rodriguez has a fight coming up. [The Korean] ‘Zombie’ has a fight coming up. Ortega and Zabit – all of these guys are going to fight in the next couple of months here.
“We’ll see how that all plays out. It’s hard to not say we can give Max a rematch for that fight again – do it a third time. I think all of the fans and the media would agree with that. I don’t know for sure.”
However, Dana doesn’t think Volkanovski would be pleased with a trilogy fight against Holloway, although he still hasn’t discussed it with the champion.
“I’m sure Volkanovski doesn’t love that idea. He’s like, ‘Listen, I just beat this guy twice. You know?’ And if you’re Volkanovski, you’re like, ‘Guess what? The media aren’t judges. Dana White is not a judge. None of these people are judges. The people that are assigned to judge the fight say I won twice.’
“So if you’re Volkanovski, I get it. And if you’re Volkanovski, you probably want to take a look at a different guy. I don’t know. I haven’t really talked to Volkanovski about it. It’s something I definitely need to do. We’ll see how this thing plays out.”
Do you agree with Dana White’s thoughts and ideas for Robert Whittaker, Jorge Masvidal, and Alex Volkanovski?