UFC reportedly targeting Rory MacDonald vs. Tyron Woodley for UFC 174

USA TODAY Sports

The next step towards determining Johny Hendricks' first title defense could come in the form of Rory MacDonald vs. Tyron Woodley in June.

A potential number one contender (or whatever you want to call it) match-up is in the works for the UFC's first PPV in Canada this year. While not yet finalized, a welterweight meeting between Rory MacDonald and Tyron Woodley is planned for UFC 174. MMA Junkie's Steven Marocco first had the scoop:

MacDonald (16-2) recovered from a difficult split decision loss to Robbie Lawler at UFC 167 with a FOTN decision win over Demian Maia in February. His last visit to Vancouver saw him engage in a thriller with Carlos Condit, only to lose by TKO in the final 10 seconds of the 3rd round.

Woodley (13-2) is coming off an upset win over Condit at UFC 171, winning in the 2nd round after Condit, who had hurt his knee defending a takedown, was unable to continue after absorbing a hard leg kick. The ending shouldn't take away from how impressive Woodley looked, as he clearly took round 1 and was winning the fight up to that point. He's 3-1 in the UFC with the lone loss a debatable split decision against Jake Shields.

With new champion Johny Hendricks sidelined for the long-term, as he recovers from his torn bicep, this is pretty ideal matchmaking if the fight pulls through. MacDonald has two wins over top 10 fighters (Maia and Jake Ellenberger), and Woodley's victory over Condit vaulted him into the top 5 of the UFC's rankings. The winner would absolutely have a strong case for a title shot when Hendricks returns in autumn.

UFC 174 is slated for June 14th in Vancouver, BC, Canada, where they've not been since UFC 131: Dos Santos vs. Carwin in June 2011.

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