Jared Cannonier says he has earned a title shot.
UFC 271 has come and gone, and realistically the middleweight division should have its next title fight already figured out. SHOULD, but the UFC doesn’t always play by the rules.
At UFC 271, No. 3 ranked Cannonier (15-5) knocked out Derek Brunson in the second round with vicious elbows.
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After the knockout win, Cannonier got on the mic and called out UFC President Dana White, saying he’s next. “Dana, I want that shot next, I get the shot next, it’s me! Nobody else! Me! Okay? Alright,” Cannonier screamed.
During the post-fight press conference, White confirmed Cannonier was most likely next, saying, “I’m not going to say no to Cannonier.”
However, we’ve seen fighters who have legitimately earned title shots get passed up.
I earned it
On Monday, Cannonier joined Ariel Helwani on The MMA Hour and was asked if he is confident that he has done enough to warrant a middleweight title shot.
“I’d say, I know that I earned it, but if they choose [Sean] Strickland over me, that would say something to me. It could be my ego on my shoulder telling me that they’re scared of me and they don’t want that heat just yet,” Cannonier said.
But I don’t know. I can’t really say that for sure, those guys are smart. Apparently, Izzy gets to pick his fights, and he did say my name in that post-fight interview and in the press conference. And it has been in the making. So, I would say that I’m confident that it will happen but I’m just going to stay prepared for everything.
Cannonier gave a good case against No. 6 ranked Sean Strickland.
“It’s the fight that should happen. Anyone that is mentioning Sean Strickland- No. 9 who beat No. 6, or whatever, I don’t know how the rankings work. I beat No. 9 in Kelvin Gastelum and ain’t no one gave me a title shot after that,” Cannonier said. “I don’t know. Anyone can say anything, but if they look at the landscape of the top 10, Cannonier is coming off a finish and beat a streaking opponent.”
As for when Adesanya vs. Cannonier might happen, the champion said on Saturday that he wants to fight again in June, which would be UFC 275.
Jared Cannonier tells @arielhelwani he's earned the next title shot, but if Israel Adesanya's team prefers Sean Strickland, then "they don’t want that heat just yet."
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