Yair Rodriguez, one of the UFC‘s hottest featherweight prospects, believes that a title shot is on the horizon. The 24-year-old, from Parral, Mexico is slated to face the returning BJ Penn on January 15th at UFC Fight Night 103. A win in a high-profile fight like this would be sure to turn a lot of heads and get him moving up the rankings.
“I think the title shot isn’t too far (away) […] If I keep winning my fights, it’s probably one or two more fights before my title shot.”
With Rodriguez sitting at #11 in UFC’s official featherweight rankings, a win against BJ Penn would definitely put him in the top 10. However, the featherweight division is currently stacked with talent, featuring fighters such as Max Holloway (#3) Frankie Edgar (#2) and Ricardo Lamas (#4). A win against any of these would boost Rodriguez’s title credentials. With that being said, it is unclear as to who the champion will be when Rodriguez’s time comes.
There are rumours that Conor McGregor is to be stripped of his featherweight title (Joe.co.uk), meaning that Jose Aldo will be the official featherweight champion, as he currently holds the interim belt. Meanwhile, there are also rumours that this will make Max Holloway and Anthony Pettis‘s bout an interim title fight (Bloody Elbow), meaning that one of them will have to face Jose Aldo in the near future. Whichever way these things turn out, there is a good chance that if Rodriguez can earn wins over high-ranking featherweight contenders, he will be in with a chance of a title shot.