If the words of UFC president Dana White are any indication, it doesn’t appear that former UFC lightweight champion Frankie Edgar is going to get an immediate rematch against new titleholder Benson Henderson.
He could, if he’s willing, however, get an immediate title shot.
“I have a lot of mixed feelings about a rematch. Frankie Edgar absolutely deserves one, seeing as how every fight this guy has fought, he’s given everybody else a rematch,” said White at the UFC on FX 2 pre-fight press conference.
“Yet, I don’t want him to fight at 155 pounds. I want him to go to 145 and fight for that title.”
As of Sunday, however, fresh off the loss of a fight that he felt he won, Edgar wasn’t anywhere near ready to consider a drop down to the featherweight division.
“Frankie deserves a rematch,” Edgar’s manager, Ali Abdel-Aziz, told MMAWeekly.com after talking with his client on Sunday. “We’re going to ask for a rematch.
“Frankie in the future will go down to 145, but he’s not going to go down now, he’s not. He’s not getting manhandled. He’s not getting destroyed. He won the fight.”
Though he’s not getting manhandled, White points to all the wars that Edgar has gone through recently at 155 pounds. It’s difficult for a fighter to have a prolonged career when he has the back-and-forth, physically taxing battles that Edgar has had at lightweight, according to the UFC president.
Edgar has a tremendous heart, however, and that tremendous heart is a big part of why he is reluctant to step down in weight.
“Frankie’s not the type of guy to lose and then just cower and move to 145,” commented Abdel-Aziz. “This kid has so much heart and determination.”
He may have to employ that heart and determination outside the Octagon if he wants to remain fighting at 155 pounds in the UFC. White is adamant about the move, and is more than willing to dangle the title shot. In fact, White sees it not just as dangling a title shot, but as the right thing to do by Edgar.
“If I’m gonna deny him the rematch for the 155-pound title,” he said. “I’m gonna make him move to 145 and say, ‘Yeah, you’re gonna have to fight a couple fights first to get the title.’ Does that sound right? No.”
As of Wednesday, there had been no determination on what’s going to happen either with Edgar dropping down or in regards to who gets the first crack at Henderson.
“I don’t know what’s going to happen in this situation,” said White. “Frankie and I are still talking.”
Edgar and his camp were not immediately available for comment at the time of publication.