UFC welterweight champion Tyron Woodley is almost fighting fit again, and he’s itching to return to the cage. More specifically, he’s keen to return at UFC 227, on August 4th in Los Angeles — whether against the winner of Rafael dos Anjos and Colby Covington’s UFC 225 interim title fight, or somebody else.
“I’m not really concerned with who’s ready, who’s next,” Woodley recently told MMA Junkie. “You’ve got to realize there are certain rights you deserve as a champion. When I’m ready to fight, now it’s time to fight. Whoever they got for me to fight at this time, come get this work. I don’t want to sit back and say, ‘Oh, I want to sit and wait to see what happens with this fight.’ I’m the champion. I want to fight.”
“Some of these bouts should’ve taken place anyway, maybe not with the label of interim title. But I think at that point, you make a fight. Even if it’s somebody that’s not currently in the division. Maybe it’s Nate [Diaz], maybe it’s Georges [St-Pierre]. Maybe it’s somebody else. But I’m also willing to fight all these other guys.”
Woodley then clarified that the objective is to fight all these other guys — the many dangerous contenders in the welterweight division he rules. Then, he’s hoping to head north to the middleweight division, capture gold there, and ultimately, retire.
“I kind of want to legitimately clean the division,” Woodley said. “I wouldn’t mind fighting [RDA], Colby, [Kamaru] Usman, [Darren] Till, and at that point, unless another prospect emerges, I’ve cleaned out the division. And I’m the greatest welterweight of all time at that point. And then it’s time to go up to 185, and I want that belt. I want to finish off my division. When it’s all said and done, I did everything I could do there. I want to go up and challenge myself once again, and I want to try to win the belt at ’85 and defend there and pretty much retire as a middleweight.”
What do you think of Tyron Woodley’s plans for the future?
This article first appeared on BJPenn.com on 6/5/2018.