Demian Maia wants title shot ahead of Stephen 'Wonderboy' Thompson
The UFC has a good problem on its hands with two legitimate welterweight title contenders now poised for a shot at gold after Demian Maia submitted Carlos Condit in the first round in Vancouver on Saturday night.
It was Maia's sixth consecutive win, including three submission victories by rear-naked choke over his last four fights.
The only person who might stand in Maia's way of earning the title shot is Stephen "Wonderboy" Thompson, who has won seven bouts in a row, including victories over former champion Johny Hendricks and former title contender Rory MacDonald in back-to-back fights.
While it appears that Thompson is going to get the first crack at current champion Tyron Woodley, Maia believes he's made his case to leapfrog the prolific striker and get an immediate shot at the gold following his latest win.
"I think so," Maia said when asked if he believed he should get the next title shot ahead of Thompson. "I respect very much Thompson, he's a great guy. Of course, I'm much older than him so if they could give it to me first, that would be great.
"If not, I hope they give (it) to him really fast and they decide and I wait to see who wins the fight."
Thompson has been promised the next shot at the belt by UFC president Dana White although no contracts have been signed and no dates have been determined.
If everything plays out the way it's been set up, Thompson would face Woodley later this year and if that happens, Maia is content to sit on the sidelines and wait rather than take another fight in the interim.
"I'll wait. I can stay active in training and doing my teaching, doing what I do everyday," Maia said. "The guy I fought today is not just a former champion, but he is also a guy that many people including me and I was watching Octagon-side his fight against (Robbie) Lawler and many people including me thought he won and he was supposed to be the champ.
"So what else should I do? I have six wins in a row and that's it."