While this news was met by a tidal wave of excitement among fans, a few members of the MMA community pointed out that it’s been far less than a year since reigning welterweight champion Tyron Woodley fought. His most recent fight also marked the end of a busy stretch during which he fought 4 times in just 12 months. The need for an interim title fight, then would seem to be nonexistent…
This seems to be the sentiment among those close to Woodley, such as former Bellator and ONE Championship titleholder Ben Askren.
— Ben Askren (@Benaskren) March 22, 2018
“Giving a interim at WW is so ridiculous,” Askren said in a Tweet. “[Tyron Woodley has] only been out 8ish months and defended 4 times in 12 months prior.”
Woodley seems to share Askren’s feelings on the situation. Shortly after Askren Tweeted his thoughts, the UFC welterweight champ took to Twitter to echo Askren’s sentiments with a short but sweet statement on the situation.
— Tyron T-Wood Woodley (@TWooodley) March 22, 2018
“SMFH,” Woodley said.
Woodley’s statement is far from an essay, but it sure seems to paint a picture of how he feels about the situation.
Woodley last fought at the end of July in 2017, when he defeated Demian Maia by unanimous decision. In his next most recent fight, he defended his title with a close decision win over Stephen “Wonderboy” Thompson. This decision win was preceded by a draw with Thompson, which was in turn preceded by a title-winning, first-round knockout of Robbie Lawler in July of 2016. Needless to say, Woodley had a very busy year 2016-2017 season, so his frustration about this interim title being created after just 8 months after his last fight is certainly understandable.
What do you think of the UFC’s choice to make a Rafael dos Anjos vs. Colby Covington interim title fight? Is Tyron Woodley right to be frustrated?
This article first appeared on BJPenn.com on 3/23/2018.