As the old adage goes, ‘Timing is everything.’ Anthony Pettis appeared to have the entire MMA world in the palm of his hand when 2010 wrapped. Fast forward nearly six months and UFC president Dana White can’t help but notice how quickly things turned on the last WEC lightweight champ.
“The kid is in a bad position now,” White stated Wednesday. “He was supposed to be the next in line, and all this crazy stuff happens.”
Immediately after emerging onto the Octagon scene with his heartbreaking appearance on MTV’s “World of Jenks,” Pettis unleashing the most revolutionary kick in mixed martial arts history. The strike not only launched him into superstardom, but also earned him next dibs at the UFC lightweight strap.
Unfortunately for the 24-year-old, UFC champ Frankie Edgar and Gray Maynard fought to a highly controversial draw at this past New Year’s Day. They were scheduled to complete their trilogy this Saturday at UFC 130, but both contestants were forced to withdraw with injuries.
Pettis was quickly assigned to face Clay Guida at “The Ultimate Fighter 13 Finale” once Edgar vs. Maynard III was announced. Guida is the furthest thing the lightweight division has from a gimme fight, so the UFC didn’t do him any favors by matching up against MMA’s Energizer Bunny.
Regardless, assuming he can lay out “The Carpenter” next weekend, it appears Pettis would still be another victory or two away from sniffing a UFC title fight.
“This is one of the things that happen in a sport like this,” White flatly said. “I respect him for stepping up for taking on a tough guy like Guida, and he’ll probably have to fight again before he gets a shot at one of those guys.
“It sucks for him. It’s a [expletive] position for him to be in.”