"Wait, Dana White said WHAT?!"
The collective Twitterverse could be heard (seen) uttering (typing) these words as news broke that White, on a UFC on FOX 4 conference call, declared that the winner of Saturday's Shogun vs. Vera matchup was next in line for a shot at the light heavyweight title.
I will admit this: I too, was skeptical at first.
Skeptical like, cursing Dana White and the UFC's logic skeptical.
But, I gave the reasoning some thought, and I have deduced three reasons why this bold, seemingly insane proclamation actually makes sense for the UFC.
Start the slideshow to see the method behind the UFC brass's madness.
The first and most obvious reason UFC President Dana White declared Saturday's main event to be a title eliminator is this—it adds depth to the matchup and gives viewers an added incentive to tune in.
The UFC is, for the most part, a fair organization, and title shots are generally awarded in a legitimate, easy-to-follow fashion.
That said, if you think the company would not compromise this logic just a teensy-weensy bit to bolster its ratings on primetime FOX television, you are downright crazy.
This is a business, and when it comes time to put up or shut up, White will do whatever it takes to put dolla' bills in the company's pockets.
"So what?" you say. "I already figured this much!"
Well, my friends, check out the next slide for an even juicier reason why White may have let his mouth get a little out of hand at Monday's press conference.
November 19, 2011 brought UFC fans one of the best fights in promotion history.
Mauricio "Shogun" Rua and perennial fan favorite Dan Henderson stood and traded bombs for 25 minutes in what was a bloodbath of epic magnitude.
Neither fighter could be finished, and the bout had little resolution.
Henderson clearly won the first three rounds of the fight, but Shogun roared back and took advantage of his tired foe in the latter two stages, earning what could have been a 10-8 round in the final frame.
Hendo had all cylinders firing early, but Shogun charged with a vengeance late.
If only we could have some finality here!
Oh, but we can.
With Dan Henderson set to fight champion Jon Jones at UFC 151, announcing the winner of Rua vs. Vera as the next title contender makes perfect sense.
You probably follow my logic at this point, but if not, let me explain.
Hendo upsets Jon Jones, somehow, and he becomes the light heavyweight champion of the world.
Should Rua defeat Vera Saturday at UFC on FOX 4...BOOM!
We have our 2011 fight of the year rematch booked, but a title shot is on the line this time.
Remember how I said the UFC is ratings-crazy? Just imagine what this bout would pull and the hype that could be generated in its lead-up.
Maybe the UFC knows something we do not, eh?
Jon Jones has spoken about moving to heavyweight in the future, and, should he dispatch of Dan Henderson at UFC 151, the move would make sense then more than ever.
Another possible option is a superfight with Anderson Silva, but each man has expressed his lack of enthusiasm with the bout.
Either way, maybe the Shogun vs. Vera winner is not getting Jones at all; maybe he is leaving the division, allowing White to restructure the 205 lb. class without worry of collapsing the champion's reign.
Is this the most reasonable explanation for White's unlikely statement?
The rational human being in me wants to say "yes," but the fight fan in me wants to believe in slide No. 2.
Whatever his reasons, one thing is clear: the light heavyweight division just got a whole lot more interesting thanks to White and his loud mouth.
What do you think about White's comments? Can you think of any other reason this actually makes sense for the 205 lb. division?
Leave a comment, and we will discuss your thoughts.
For fans of MMA, heavy metal music or general absurdity, follow Hunter Homistek on Twitter @HunterAHomistek.