“Yeah, I think if Quinton beats Jardine, he’ll get the next shot at the title,” said UFC president Dana White following Wednesday’s UFC 94 pre-fight press conference in Las Vegas.
And that is regardless of the outcome of a key battle at UFC 94. Lyoto Machida, the No. 4 ranked light heavyweight fighter in the world, and No. 10 ranked Thiago Silva are slated for a showdown in the top undercard fight at UFC 94. Both have been on a tear through the 205-pound division and both are undefeated.
But while the winner of Machida vs. Silva is likely to narrow the field of contenders to the title currently held by “Sugar” Rashad Evans, it appears that Quinton “Rampage” Jackson — with a win over Keith Jardine at UFC 96 on March 7 — will jump to the head of the line.
White has stated in the past that Jackson vs. Evans might have already been on tap, but Evans was not fully recovered yet from his title victory over Forrest Griffin at UFC 92, so they put Jackson and Jardine together for the Columbus fight card.