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Chris Weidman believes he should be next up for champ Robert Whittaker

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Unsurprisingly, Weidman thinks his stoppage win over Kelvin Gastelum should grant him the next title shot at 185 pounds.

UFC Fight Night: Weidman v Gastelum Photo by Mike Roach/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images

Chris Weidman has been out of action for several months now as he nurses a bunged up thumb injury he suffered in his July victory over Kelvin Gastelum. But that didn’t stop him from flying all the way to Australia for UFC 221 where the future of his division was being decided.

Even with all signs pointing towards the winner of the Luke Rockhold vs. Yoel Romero semi-interim fight getting the next shot at Robert Whittaker, he made his case to reporters in Perth that he was the most deserving.

”I think it’s good that the division will be less chaotic, less weird, so you’ll have just a straight up champion, no interims,” he told Submission Radio. “As for who should fight Whittaker? I don’t know, I think I should. I just beat - what is Gastelum ranked, top five? He’s ranked fifth? I just finished him, he’s never gotten finished in his career.”

As for Romero?

”He just had a loss to Whittaker,” Weidman argued.

Unfortunately for Weidman, that loss from UFC 213 and Romero missing weight didn’t stop UFC president Dana White from confirming Romero as next up for Whittaker. A small glimmer of hope opened up for “The All American” when Yoel declared he’d broken his leg en route to his third round victory over Rockhold. But doctors soon cleared that up and declared Romero ‘good to go’ with a few weeks rest.

That’s longer than it will take for Weidman to get back to training.

”There’s still pain, I’m able to punch decent,” he said regarding his ongoing thumb problems. “But still if I clip the thumb it still hurts. But it’s more the grappling right now, when I go to grab or do any movement I get little sharp pains so I’m not able to squeeze like I’d like. And so I’m at about the six month mark, Khabib says it takes about eight months, so maybe another two months or maybe less.”

”I’m going to go see a doctor in Las Vegas coming up here and get some injections and hopefully speed up the process.”

We assume he’s talking about stem cells. Why fighters aren’t soaking in the stuff like Neo in the Matrix is beyond me. Regardless of his thumb, it sounds like Weidman will be stuck on the sidelines with no title shot unless something crazy happens ... which given the past two years at 185 pounds, is not that unlikely.