Rafael dos Anjos was the reining, defending, undisputed UFC lightweight champion a few years ago and back then he was scheduled to make a title defense in March of 2016 at UFC 196 against sports icon and then UFC featherweight champion Conor McGregor.
That fight never happened as dos Anjos withdrew from the fight with a foot injury.
Instead, McGregor then fought Nate Diaz and lost which set up an epic rematch in which McGregor got his revenge over Diaz. Between those two blockbuster fights, dos Anjos lost his title to Eddie Alvarez and then Alvarez would go on to lose his belt to McGregor.
After dos Anjos lost his title he made the decision to move up to welterweight where he fought for an interim title. Now he’s back on a path that he once successfully walked as last night he returned to lightweight and looked fantastic in his win over Paul Felder at UFC Vegas 14.
Now that dos Anjos is back on the map 155-pounds, he wants to revisit the McGregor fight.
“Khabib leaving the division, I think it will leave the division wide open,” dos Anjos said at his post-fight press conference. “If you look at the rankings, we have three former interim champions: Tony (Ferguson), (Justin) Gaethje and Dustin Poirier. The only two real champs in that division are me and Conor. We were scheduled to fight twice. If the champ leaves the division, why not (book me vs. McGregor)?”
As for McGregor, he’s booked to fight Dustin Poirier in January at UFC 257, but after he was called out by dos Anjos, he went to twitter to say he’s down for the fight after he finishes business with Poirier.
Dustin first, but I’m down for it all. Throwback to this classic lol.— Conor McGregor (@TheNotoriousMMA) November 15, 2020
Look at Dana hahahah
Vintage MMA entertainment.
El Chap! pic.twitter.com/GiC3yl8HB6
Now there is a lot of moving parts at lightweight, but dos Anjos is clear with his approach. He wants whoever is going to get him a closer to a title shot and if it just so happens to be McGregor, then he’ll be happy to finally close out the back-and-forth drama over the past few years.
“I’m just saying that fight makes sense. It does make sense,” dos Anjos said. “I’ve never pulled out of any fight due to injury. That was my first fight I had to pull out due to injury, and I had my 30th UFC appearance tonight. I’ve been with the company for 12 years. I’ve done a lot. I think champion retiring, Khabib is stepping out and retiring. I think that could be a good matchup, and I’m sure a lot of fans want to see that fight happen.”