The main event fight between top-ranked Featherweight contenders, Brian Ortega and Yair Rodriguez, ended in rather anticlimactic fashion earlier today (Sat., July 16, 2022) at UFC Long Island, after “T-City” separated his shoulder in round one, resulting in a technical knockout win for “El Pantera.”
Once the dust settled, both Rodriguez and Ortega agreed to run it back once “T-City” is good to go again, though Rodriguez would love for the do-over to take place with the title on the line. The disappointing finish has now left the championship picture a mess because Josh Emmett is still lurking in the shadows calling for his shot against division kingpin, Alexander Volkanovski.
Speaking of which, “The Great” has his eyes on the Lightweight strap, but he will likely have to wait awhile since it was just confirmed that Charles Oliveira will face Islam Makhachev for the vacant 155-pound title at UFC 280 on Oct. 22, 2022, in Abu Dhabi. Not to mention the fact that Volkanovski will be on the mend as a result of thumb surgery.
With all of the uncertainties at the moment, UFC President, Dana White, was met with an interesting scenario during the post-fight presser (video replay here) after he was asked if he would entertain the idea of an interim Featherweight title fight between Rodriguez and Emmett.
And his answer may surprise you.
“Yeah, I mean Volkanovski I think is going to have surgery on his hand,” White said. “I think there is something wrong with his hand. Yeah, we will figure it out. So, you're asking if that’s a possibility, I like it. I don’t hate it,” he concluded.
Rodriguez and Emmett are currently tied for the No. 3 spot at 145 pounds, so a match up between the two does make sense, and adding an interim title to the potential barn-burner only sweetens the pot. As for Ortega and Volkanovski’s injury issues, there is no telling how long they are going to keep them out of action.
For complete UFC Long Island results and coverage click here.