If there's any fighter in the UFC right now who has more than earned their shot at the belt, it's Johny Hendricks.
The former three time Division I national champion wrestler possesses a 14-1 overall record which includes a five fight winning streak over some seriously elite competition.
It all started with his thunderous 12 second knockout of the then number two ranked welterweight Jon Fitch. He followed up by earning a split decision over number five ranked Josh Koscheck and then proceeded to blast number three-ranked Martin Kampmann in just 46 seconds this past November in the co-main event of UFC 154.
After his victory over "The Hitman," Hendricks made it known in his post-fight speech that he felt he'd done enough to earn a shot at the title, even saying he'd sit out until he got his opportunity to fight Georges St. Pierre.
So naturally, when St. Pierre instead chose to fight Nick Diaz, "Big Rigg" was a bit perturbed. But what really set him off was his reasoning. "GSP" mentioned at the UFC 158 press conference that he felt Diaz deserved the shot over Hendricks because he believed Hendricks had lost to Koscheck, a man he'd already defeated.
That didn't make much sense considering he also believed Diaz had lost to Carlos Condit for the interim title, the man that "Rush" had just returned to defend his championship against.
Hendricks spoke his mind during an appearance on MMAmania's Verbal Submission podcast last night and he didn't hold back:
"My reaction was like, 'Really?! You're an idiot.' He said that Condit really did beat Nick Diaz, know what I'm saying? He said, 'I'm fighting the true number one contender Carlos Condit,' and now, he's going backtracking and saying, 'Well, I think [Hendricks] lost.' Who cares? You don't get to decide. He's not a judge. He's not a judge. He's a fighter. He's paid to fight and he's paid to fight me. The fact that he was able to ask and get this request [to fight Diaz], the only thing this is, is it gives me more drive. It's not like I didn't have enough but what's gonna happen is, whenever I look across the cage, he's not going to see fear. He's not gonna see anything. All I want to do is I want to fight him. I want to look across and see GSP and that might be something he's not used to. I don't know. I don't know why he didn't take the fight but I guess I wouldn't want to fight me as well."
Hendricks will instead be fighting the very heavy-hitting Jake Ellenberger on the UFC 158 main card next month (March 16, 2013) on the same night that St. Pierre defends his title against Diaz.
If Hendricks defeats "The Juggernaut," is there any way St. Pierre can deny him his shot this time?