UFC light heavyweight contender Phil Davis isn't sold on 205-pound champion Jon Jones defending his title at UFC 172 at the end of this month.
Speaking with MMA Junkie, "Mr. Wonderful," who is booked against Anthony Johnson on the same April 26 card, explains that he wouldn't be shocked to end up fighting for the interim light heavyweight strap.
"He may not fight at UFC 172," Davis said. "It’s not too late for him to back out of this one. It’s happened before. I'm just saying it might happen again. Apparently, beating the no. 1 contender doesn't move you up enough in the rankings, so I need to make sure I'm letting people know I'm ready for a title shot whenever it's available. And if he happens to back out of this fight for whatever reason, I'm willing to take on Glover Teixeira for an interim championship."
Jones vs. Teixeira was originally pegged for UFC 169 and then later UFC 170, both of which took place in February and neither of which ended up going as planned.
"Bones," the UFC's top pound-for-pound fighter in its official rankings, has been on the shelf since a hard-fought decision win over Alexander Gustafsson at UFC 165 in September.
While the decision was a bit controversial, it marked Jones' 10th straight victory, as well as his sixth straight UFC light heavyweight title defense (a company record).
Meanwhile, Teixeira has won an incredible 20 bouts in a row, including five decisive wins inside the Octagon.
Davis—the No. 4 light heavyweight, according to the UFC—is riding a four-fight unbeaten streak, most recently winning a heavily disputed split decision over upcoming middleweight title challenger Lyoto Machida at UFC 163 in August.
His expected opponent "Rumble" Johnson has rattled off six straight wins (four knockouts) on the regional scene since being cut by the UFC back in January 2012.
Is Davis reasonable in believing it's anything but a sure thing that Jones will be competing in the headlining bout of UFC 172?
John Heinis is a Featured Columnist for Bleacher Report. He is also the MMA editor for eDraft.com.