On Dec. 11, Frankie Edgar knocked out Chad Mendes in The Ultimate Fighter 22 Finale main event. Just 24 hours before Conor McGregor did the same to Jose Aldo to capture the featherweight title at UFC 194, Edgar was promised by UFC president Dana White that he would face the winner of the title fight in his next outing.
Edgar’s been lobbying for a match-up against McGregor for some time. After McGregor knocked out Mendes at UFC 189 to win the interim featherweight title, Edgar jumped up on the Octagon apron and suggested the two fight next, before McGregor faced Aldo.
Now, instead of defending the unified 145-pound belt, McGregor has opted to challenge lightweight champion Rafael dos Anjos in an effort to become the first fighter in UFC history to hold two divisional belts at the same time.
The decision by McGregor to chase history left Edgar in limbo with a handful of seemingly broken promises. “The Notorious” addressed why he decided to go up to challenge for the 155-pound title before defending his featherweight championship against Edgar during a press conference in Las Vegas on Wednesday.
“Frankie has a little bit of desperation about him,” said the Irishman. “He went 0-2 in lightweight, got the chance to fight for the featherweight title and got the head slapped off him. Now he’s running around begging. It has a stink of desperation, so I’m going to leave him sit for a while.”
Edgar is a former UFC lightweight champion. He’s on a five-fight winning streak. He may very well get the next shot at the featherweight title, but he’s going to have to wait for McGregor’s lightweight aspirations to play out.
McGregor faces dos Anjos in the UFC 197 main event on March 5 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas.