Photo of Anthony Pettis by Esther Lin for MMA Fighting
To that end, he requires a "Smooth" rematch against "Bendo," who took over the 155-pound throne under the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) banner by outpointing Frankie Edgar back on February 26 in Japan. "Showtime" held up his end of the bargain by cleaning the clock of Boston grappler Joe Lauzon, also at UFC 144, and put himself in prime position to make it two in a row against Henderson.
Then Edgar had to go and get himself an immediate rematch.
Pettis opted to use the division logjam to correct a shoulder injury earlier in the year. With a possible return this fall, there's no telling where the Duke Roufus-trained striker will end up in the 155-pound pecking order, but he's already calling for a lightweight title shot.
Just don't tell him he's going to Strikeforce.
"I had shoulder surgery in early April, I'm just trying to get better and get back in the cage. I'm shooting for October or November. I want a title shot, so whoever's gonna get me that next fight to a title shot, I'm up for it. I'm in the UFC and I want a UFC title shot. I worked my way to get here and I think I deserve a title shot."
Hear more from Pettis (via MMA Weekly) on his recovery, his timetable for return and his quest for division gold, after the jump.
For more on "Showtime's" shoulder surgery click here.