After his August win over TUF season 10 winner Roy Nelson, Junior dos Santos had his coveted shot at the UFC heavyweight title.
Four months later, news broke that dos Santos would have to wait six to eight months due to a torn rotator cuff injury suffered by UFC heavyweight champion Cain Velasquez during his October fight with then-champ Brock Lesnar.
Now, 10 months later, dos Santos has once again earned himself a title shot against Velasquez.
Dos Santos battered former UFC interim heavyweight champion Shane Carwin at UFC 131, winning a lopsided unanimous decision 30-27, 30-27, 30-26 against Carwin in front of 14,685 fans at Rogers Arena in Vancouver. The win once again cemented dos Santos as the No. 1 contender to Velaquez's title, and the fight is expected to take place around November or December.
Florian Headed for Title Shot Against Jose Aldo
Kenny Florian will once again get his chance to shine in the spotlight against one of the UFC's toughest champions.
The Massachusetts native Florian took home a unanimous decision against a very game Diego Nunes at UFC 131, likely making him the next opponent to take on UFC featherweight champion Jose Aldo.
"I think Jose is one of the best in the game. I have a lot of respect for him, and I'm a big fan. Every UFC fighter's dream is to be a champion. I don't want to look too far ahead, but that's [my goal]," said Florian.
White in essence confirmed Florian's wish for a shot at the belt, saying, "I've got a lot of respect for him; he deserves a shot at the title. No doubt about it."
Florian will look to succeed where many others have failed against Aldo—a list that includes former champions Mike Thomas Brown and Urijah Faber, as well as his most recent victory over Mark Hominick.
Shaq Expected to Have Role in UFC's Future
UFC president Dana White went on ESPN's First Take prior to UFC 131, and spoke to ESPN personality Mike Hill about the event, as well as Shaquille O'Neal's future with the UFC. Here's what White had to say about the newly-retired Shaq:
"Shaq's been training for a long time, and actually a week before he retired, Shaq called me and said he wanted to be involved in the UFC somehow. He's always been a good friend to us, and I'm sure you're going to see Shaq around the UFC a lot."
White also mentioned O'Neal's heavy involvement in the first season of TUF, and O'Neal will likely be introduced in a similar manner as UFC legend Chuck Liddell was after he retired from the sport.