For a few months there, many people believed Souza was on track to fight Weidman in the coming months, provided he got by Yoel Romero. That fight, however, never happened.
In the interim, Rockhold cruised through another top contender in Lyoto Machida, while Souza defeated the unranked Chris Camozzi. Since the AKA fighter is currently ranked as the #1 contender, most people have concluded that Weidman-Rockhold will go down in the near future.
“There’s no doubt I’m next. I’m very confident, no matter what my ranking number is. I’m undefeated in the UFC, it has been five straight wins so far. The man ahead of me has already been knocked out and that counts a lot.”
Souza, of course, if referring to Rockhold’s stoppage loss to Belfort, which went down in 2013. While ordinarily, that would hurt a contender’s title shot prospects, MMA is a game of ‘what have you done for me lately’. Defeating Machida has generated a tee-un of buzz for Rockhold (which followed finishes over Tim Boetsch, Michael Bisping and Costas Philippou).
Now does any of this mean that Weidman-Souza won’t be an amazing fight? Or that the latter won’t be a stiff challenge for champ? Of course not. Whatever direction the UFC goes, the fans will win.