UFC President Dana White acted as the Zuffa SWAT Team this weekend, putting an end to the “Rally for Mark Hunt” after weeks of online supporters called for the heavyweight’s name as a replacement for Alistair Overeem if the heavyweight contender is unable to get licensed for a May 26 title-fight with Junior dos Santos. Overeem faces the NSAC on April 24 to address the elevated level of testosterone in his system found during a recent drug test.
However, as previous stated, even if Overeem’s argument fails it will not be Hunt who fills his shoes at UFC 146.
“Mark Hunt will not get title shot…will have to fight a contender,” said White at the post-event presser for UFC on Fuel 2. “They can keep rallying. It ain’t going to happen.”
The public’s case for Hunt was based primarily on his status as a PRIDE icon and winner of three straight inside the Octagon including a February knockout of Cheick Kongo. Hunt is currently scheduled to compete at UFC 146, adding fuel to the fire, though it now appears he’ll face Stefan Struve as expected.
White is holding off on addressing the Overeem situation further until after the hulking Dutchman meets with the NSAC.
PHOTO CREDIT – TRIUMPH UNITED
MMATraining Take: Whew! As I wrote last week, Hunt is good for MMA but bad for buyrates. His story, especially this latest chapter, is a tale worth smiling over but he definitely didn’t deserve a crack at MMA’s most prestigious belt just because a small percentage of hardcore fans called for it.