Rory MacDonald Scored UFC 181 Fight for Robbie Lawler, Looks Forward to Rematch

December 9, 2014
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The UFC welterweight title changed hands at UFC 181 on Dec. 6, when Robbie Lawler edged out Johny Hendricks by split decision. The decision was controversial, but not to No.2-ranked 170-pound contender Rory MacDonald.

The 25-year-old Canadian sat cage-side for the rematch between Hendricks and Lawler. He watched with a keen eye. He’s certainly in line for a title fight. While many disagreed with the decision, MacDonald agreed with the judges’ scoring.

Rory MacDonald at UFC 129“I thought it was a great fight, I scored it Robbie three rounds to two,” he said following the event. “I’m very excited to fight him next.”

Following MacDonald’s UFC Fight Night 54 TKO finish of Tarac Saffiedine, UFC president Dana White stated the MacDonald would face the winner of the UFC 181 title fight.

“It’s pretty impossible to deny Rory that, whoever comes out of that Hendricks-Lawler fight, he’s the next guy in line,” White told the Canadian Press at the time. “He’s next in line and that fight will be in Canada.”

SEE ALSO: Rory MacDonald to Face Hendricks vs. Lawler Winner in Canada

Lawler holds a win over MacDonald. They fought to a split decision at UFC 167 in November 2013. MacDonald hopes White’s plans haven’t changed. He’s excited that the rematch could take place in his home country and promises that he’ll be in the right mindset and well prepared.

“I’ll be very focused and I’ll be ready. I’ve been hearing that the fight will be in Canada and that’d be great if it was. I’d love it if it were in British Columbia, but I’d be happy with anywhere up there,” he said.

It turns out that MacDonald’s title shot isn’t exactly a done deal. A Lawler-Hendricks trilogy could very well be in the makings.

SEE ALSO: Johny Hendricks vs. Robbie Lawler II Fight Highlights Video

“I think that is what we said, so we’ll see what happens,” White said during the UFC 181 Post-Show on Fox Sports 1 about MacDonald being next in line. Although, White followed up those comments with, “A trilogy wouldn’t be a bad idea.”

Whether the trilogy between Hendricks and Lawler happens next or MacDonald gets his rematch remains up in the air.

“I have no idea,” said White when asked if MacDonald’s title shot was set in stone.

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  • Green Machine

    Why do they screw around with the fighters sending texts guaranteeing title shots and then back tracking it is brutal management. If there isn’t a contract signed they should’t promise anything just keep their mouths shut until after the title fight. This has happened soooo much in the last few years it’s ridiculous!

  • uncle

    Lawler is going to beat this weirdo’s a**

    • cheflacsto

      I don’t like Rory at all and he does seem to have a very weird persona. I am not sure Robbie will be him though. Sometimes Rory is a boring fighter because he seems to do whatever is necessary to take away his opponents strengths. I don’t know what strategy he will use but I bet he will take Robbie down and hold him there like Johnny tried to do, but Rory’s ground game is way better than Johnny’s. If I had to pick I would say Rory by decision but I would love Lawler to knock him out.

      • uncle

        This fight is like Megatron vs Starscream and Rory is Starscream

        • cheflacsto

          I hope so but I highly doubt it. They already fought once to a split decision. I can’t stand Rory but I gotta be honest. He is a smart, multi dimensional fighter. Robbie wants to stand and trade.

          • mmaguy

            He’s got better ground game but worst wrestling. I’m canadian and I really think Robbie is going to beat him fairly easily.

            people were not impressed with his performance against Hendrix but what could Lawler could have done with a big head between his leg? Nothing!
            I bet Robbie will finish him in the third round.

          • cheflacsto

            If Robbie can land he will certainly finish, but Rory is good. Tyron Woodley did nothing against Rory and he was a division 1 all american in wrestling. Lawler was only a state champ. I just see Rory staying out of range and scoring in a 5 round boring fight.

          • uncle

            He will have no choice if Robbie is able to get up he
            wasn’t successful keeping him down the 1st time, and
            if he get blitz like Hendricks Rory will be counting sheep.

  • TKDGuy

    I hope Lawler defends the belt against someone before another rematch with Hendricks.

    • MuayThaiFood

      I agree, there is nothing that compelling about a rematch so soon.

  • battle ready

    Please don’t do an immediate rematch with Hendricks! Having watched the fight again, focusing on the stalling from Hendricks in the fifth round, I am convinced that he should have to fight a couple of fights with the best up and comers to earn a title chance again. Hiding between your opponent’s legs,and not seriously engaging in the fight should be enough to preclude any notion that Hendricks is worthy of an immediate rematch, even if it was a “controversial” decision. Let Rory fight for the title as promised and let Hendricks beat two really good guys, then if Lawler still has the title it will be a rubber match worth laying down good money for.

    • John Wojtowicz

      Not to make an excuse, but Hendricks explained the supposed stalling/hiding was really him completely fatigued. I think he said his plan was to wear out Lawler with takedown attempts, but the reverse happened. He pointed out his weight cut, and having ballooned up to 215 between fights. Still, I thought he was doing well enough standing up with Lawler, even in the 4th. Regardless, it might do him well to be in a 3-rd fight where he needs to finish (or otherwise dominate).

  • drkdisciple

    LIke him or not Rory will be the next champion at 170.

  • Joe

    Robbie & Rory should be next, give Hendricks Woodley. If Rory and Johnny both win then make the rubber match with the promise of a Hendricks title shot, while Rory goes in with Carlos.

    If Robbie beats Rory and Hendricks beats Tyrone, then match Rory with Hendricks and give the rubber match if he can get past Rory.

    I believe that anyone who has successfully defended a title 10 consecutive times or more deserves an immediate rematch, if the champ was obviously cheated(think Machida Rua type decision) lost by freak accident (Couture Vitor 2) or a major mistake by a referee (not seeing an eye poke, groin shot, etc) that led to a loss, then an immediate rematch is justified. If not then there should be a minimum of two wins against top ten fighters required to get another title shot.

    • Hugh Shakeshaft

      I am eager to see Carlos back in the mix. I’ve always wanted to see him with the strap.