UFC president Dana White said Friday that the winner of Robbie Lawler vs. Rafael dos Anjos will be welterweight champ Tyron Woodley’s next title challenger.
It sounds like Robbie Lawler vs. Rafael dos Anjos will determine the next UFC welterweight title challenger – not Stephen Thompson vs. Jorge Masvidal or Demian Maia vs. Colby Covington. That’s according to UFC president Dana White, who told the assembled media at the UFC 217 pre-fight press conference in Toronto on Friday that the Lawler vs. dos Anjos winner will be next in line to fight champion Tyron Woodley.
The UFC announced Thursday that Lawler — a former welterweight champ — and dos Anjos — a former lightweight champ — will headline UFC on FOX 26 in December.
Lawler took a year off after the Woodley knockout loss. He rebounded this past summer with a decision win over Donald Cerrone at UFC 214.
Dos Anjos is 2-0 since moving up to 170 pounds earlier this year. In his divisional debut, he defeated Tarec Saffiedine by decision. Just last month, the Brazilian tapped out Neil Magny in the first round.
Shortly after the fight was confirmed, dos Anjos suggested it should be for the interim 170-pound title, since Woodley is still recovering from a shoulder injury. But “The Chosen One,” who fought three times since beating Lawler for the title in July 2016, wasn’t open to that idea.
Woodley’s first defense ended in a majority draw against Thompson at UFC 205 last November. He defeated “Wonderboy” in a March rematch, and most recently beat Maia at UFC 214.
UFC on FOX 26 will take place at Bell MTS Place in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada on Dec. 16.