Johny Hendricks believes he is the number one contender in the UFC welterweight division

Considered one of the top welterweights in the world, former UFC champion Johny Hendricks is in a precarious position.

Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports
Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports

The former Oklahoma State Cowboy is coming off of a bounce-back win over Matt Brown after he split a pair of highly contested five round fights with current champ Robbie Lawler.

Hendricks(17-3) has a real claim at being the next challenger for the title after Lawler defends the title in July against Rory MacDonald, so the question for Hendricks is if he’ll take another fight or wait for the title shot.

“We talked about it, thought about it and I might take a fight, I might not,” Hendricks toldĀ the media last week at UFC on FOX 15. “We want to see where we fall and see what happens. Right now I see myself as the number one contender. I took a fight and guess what? It took a belt away from, a belt opportunity. I had a shot at the belt, and Rory MacDonald had a fight so I was like, man, I don’t want them to jump over me. So I took a fight, and that fight ended up not happening. it cost me a title shot.”

In the scrum, Hendricks talked about how his right arm was finally feeling up to speed with his left, and that he has changed his diet. He’s no walking around at about 202 pounds rather than the usual 220. Hendricks also went on to talk about the balance between being an entertaining fighter and an effective fighter.

“I want to put on a show for the fans, but I also want to win,” Hendricks said. “Look where that got me. Put on a show for the fans, and you end up losing. I’m definitely going to back to whatever I win at. Sometimes the fans are very hard to please, and you just have to accept that. Sometimes you have to sit there and say, ‘man, I did my best, and my best was that little style. I had to do it, and I won and maybe the next one I can mix it up a little bit better.'”

Continuing on with the discussion about fighting style, Hendricks looked at how wrestling is a much safer tactic than striking when it comes to scoring points.

“[As a striker] I’ve outpointed a lot of people over the last couple of fights, and you don’t win them,” Hendricks said. “What wins fights? Well, whenever you can hold somebody down and punch them a bunch and do those kinds of things, that is a definitely a good notch on your belt. If it goes to a decision, it’s nice to have that under you belt as well.”

Nevertheless, Hendricks is focused to that future, and for the former champ, that future is dependent on what he’s told to do by Dana White.

“Let’s say that Rory MacDonald beats Lawler, and it’s a really close fight and they do a rematch,” Hendricks said. “Well then, whoever Dana White sends my way, then that’s who I’m going to fight.”