Dana White was blown away by Carla Esparza’s performance on Saturday night, but the UFC president is still reluctant to declare ‘Cookie Monster’ the next No. 1 contender.
Esparza battered Yan Xiaonan enroute to a stoppage victory in the UFC Vegas 27 co-main event and, despite being on a five-fight win streak, White isn’t sure the former UFC strawweight champ is ready for a title shot.
The UFC president has Weili Zhang to think about, who is demanding an immediate rematch with Rose Namajunas following her devastating knockout loss at UFC 261.
Unlike Zhang, however, Esparza holds a submission victory over ‘Thug Rose’ from 2014, something White will surely consider when deciding Namajunas’ next opponent.
“She looked like a beast tonight,” White said about Esparza following her second-round TKO of Xiaonan (h/t Damon Martin of MMA Fighting). “She came out and absolutely dominated. You can tell by the way she was fighting that she was trying to make a statement. Statement made. Message received. We see you.”
“I don’t know what we’re going to do next. If we do the rematch [witih Zhang Weili] or if we give it to her.”
White has a tough call to make, but both Zhang and Esparza will want an answer soon. Expect an official announcement in the coming weeks.