By now we've all heard that Rashad Evans vs Phil Davis is in the works to headline the 2nd UFC on Fox event. Evans is 32, boasts a 16-1-1 record and is a former UFC Light Heavyweight Champion. Phil Davis is 27 and holds a perfect 9-0 record. The two were originally scheduled to matchup at UFC 133 before Davis pulled out with an injury. As of the October update, Evan is #3 in the consensus rankings and Davis is #7. A match up between the two should make sense.
I don't believe it does.
The original matchup was supposed to come when Davis was fairly fresh off of a March decision win over Antonio Rogerio Nogueira and Evans had been out since May of 2010.
At the time, it was still a big step up for Davis...who before then, the UFC seemed content to bring along steadily. But considering the circumstances...Evans' long layoff where he also had an injury...it wasn't quite as bad as it appeared on the surface.
But now the tables are turned and the odds are almost impossibly in the favor of Evans. He is the veteran, he has faced higher level opponents, and he just won in August. Davis, the young up and comer taking a huge step up in competition is now doing so off of a long layoff where he suffered a knee injury.
I just think it would have been better to give Phil Davis a fight that wasn't such a big jump in competition after such a long layoff...and considering that he is still rather new to the sport.
I'm not exactly sure who Davis should have faced instead...but I really don't think Rashad Evans is the 'fairest' and most logical step up from Rogerio Nogeuira way back in March.
I'm not saying that Phil Davis can't win...I believe he certainly could. But at this point, it seems clear that the UFC wants to give Evans a more favorable matchup...in the hopes that Jones and Evans will both win their next fights and set up a big money grudge match.
The UFC is a business and it's understandable that they would persue the best fights...but it feels like Phil Davis is getting lost in the shuffle and is getting the short end of the stick because of it.