When Gray Maynard and Frankie Edgar fought to a draw on New Year's Day, the big loser was Anthony Pettis. He earned a title shot by winning the WEC lightweight belt in the promotion's last show, but that was pushed back in favor of an Edgar/Maynard rematch.
Now, reports have surfaced that Pettis will take on Clay Guida this spring instead of waiting for the chance at the UFC title shot. There was another UFC lightweight who was hoping for that bout.
Kenny Florian, who expects to return from a knee injury he sustained while training for a bout with Evan Dunham, wanted a shot at Pettis.
"I think if he wants to establish himself as a top lightweight, I think I've done a lot more than a lot of the guys out there," said Florian, who beat Guida by rear naked choke in Dec. 2009. "Gray Maynard beat me, obviously, but I still think I'm the third guy in the division. What better way to get to the top than a win over me?"
It's quite a benevolent move from Florian to offer himself as a launching pad for Pettis' career, but Florian isn't dumb. A win over the red-hot Pettis, who made national sports news with his Matrix-like kick in his win over Ben Henderson, could right the course for Florian. His last fight was a loss to Gray Maynard. He was then called a choker by UFC president Dana White and then was hit with the knee injury.
Would you rather see Pettis take on Guida, a wrestler with a frenetic pace, or a well-rounded fighter like Florian? Perhaps he would be challenged by a jiu-jitsu ace like George Sotiropoulous, or another fighter in the UFC's stacked lightweight division. Here's your chance to play amateur matchmaker.