Ellenberger leapfrogged to the front of the line of UFC welterweight contenders with his first-round knockout of Jake Shields at UFC Fight Night: Shields vs. Ellenberger two weeks ago. As such, it’s likely that the winner of the bout, if it happens, will be second in line behind Nick Diaz to face the winner of the UFC 137 showdown between Georges St-Pierre and Carlos Condit on October 29.
Sanchez bypassing the queue is a bit a bit of a head-scratcher though, considering he is 2-1 since returning to the UFC’s 170-pound class with decisions in both fights, and was supposed to fight Matt Hughes in his last bout at UFC 135 before getting injured and pulling out. But it isn’t a total surprise since UFC president Dana White seems to have a soft spot for the TUF 1 finalists. How else do you explain Kenny Florian getting more title shots than any fighter on the UFC’s roster in spite of him having lost every championship bout he’s fought in, other than blackmail?
Ellenberger shrugged off the news of the bout when asked today on Twitter, but it wouldn’t be the first time a fighter denied a fight was happening only to have the UFC announce the pairing down the road.
UFC 141: Lesnar vs. Overeem
December 30, 2011
MGM Grand Garden Arena
Las Vegas, Nevada