Despite a groundswell of support from fans, UFC president Dana White said Mark Hunt is not a candidate to replace Alistair Overeem in the title bout with Junior dos Santos at UFC 146 if Overeem can't get a license.
"They can keep rallying," White said on Saturday following UFC on FUEL TV 2 at Stockholm's Ericsson Globe Arena. "That ain't going to happen. Listen, Mark Hunt is going to have to fight one of the top guys. You don't just jump right into the title shot."
White mentioned Hunt needs to win against Stefan Struve, his current match-up at UFC 146, plus get past one of the heavyweight division's best to be considered for a title shot. Hunt is currently riding a three-fight win streak, but had lost six fights before that.
After Overeem's chances of getting a license for the May 26 event were called into question by the Nevada Athletic Commission, Hunt's fans took to Twitter and Facebook to lobby White for a spot for the slugger. However, their arguments that Hunt would provide an exciting fight against dos Santos did not sway White.
Now, the UFC has to wait for Overeem to have a hearing with the NAC. White said Overeem deserves to go through due process.
"Everybody gets due process," White said. "Alistair Overeem will have his due process with the Nevada State Athletic Commission. We'll see what happens and we'll go from there. When it all goes down, somebody else will speak about this. Not me."
And much to his fans' dismay, it won't be Hunt fighting dos Santos.