Esther Lin for MMA Fighting
Top 205-pound prospect Alexander Gustafsson could be next 'in line' for a shot at the UFC's light heavyweight title if he can manage to get past a resurgent Gegard Mousasi at UFC on FUEL TV 9 in Stockholm, Sweden.
Should Alexander Gustafsson defeat Strikeforce import Gegard Mousasi in his home country of Sweden on April 6, 2013 at the UFC on FUEL TV 9: "Gustafsson vs. Mousasi" event, it could mean a shot at the promotion's light heavyweight title for "The Mauler."
Soon after his unanimous decision victory over Mauricio Rua at UFC on FOX 5 last December, Gustafsson was penciled in to face "The Dreamcatcher" while many felt the win over "Shogun" was enough to warrant the 26-year-old fighter a shot at the gold.
Nevertheless, UFC President Dana White revealed during today's (Feb. 13, 2013) media scrum the young Swede will be "in line" for a 205-pound title shot should he defeat the surging Mousasi while a win for Gegard will skyrocket him to the top of the light heavyweight ladder.
"If he beats Mousasi, this is a big fight for both of those guys, obviously. If [Gegard] Mousasi beats Gustafsson, he skyrockets right to the top of that division. As far as Gustafsson goes, if he beats Mousasi in that fight, he's in line for a title shot."
Alexander's path to the title won't be easy as Mousasi will undoubtedly be looking to make a splash in his debut for the promotion and up his win streak to six straight in a fight the Armenian specifically asked for.
Jon Jones currently has a stranglehold on the division and with his fifth attempt at defending his title against Chael Sonnen looming at UFC 159, there are plenty of challengers waiting in the wings such as Lyoto Machida and Dan Henderson.
"The Dragon" and "Hendo" will collide in the co-main event of UFC 157 on Feb. 23, 2013 in Anaheim, California, in a contest that carries title shot implications, as well.
Once regarded as the best and toughest division in all of mixed martial arts (MMA), the 205-pound weight class seems to be back in business yet again.