Demian Maia could be next in line for a shot at the welterweight strap.
The decorated Brazilian jiu jitsu black belt is set to battle Jake Shields in the main event of UFC Fight Night 29 in Barueri, Brazil Wednesday. Should Maia impressively dispatch the one-time title challenger, he could receive a crack at the winner of the upcoming 170-pound championship bout between Georges St. Pierre and Johny Hendricks.
“Definitely,” UFC president Dana White told reporters on a media call Monday. “Demian Maia is ranked No. 4. Shields isn't ranked, but a win over Shields is still a big win.”
A former middleweight title challenger, Maia has been on a tear since dropping to welterweight last year.