Ferguson targets fall return

Former interim UFC lightweight champion Tony Ferguson is currently recovering from surgery. He told ESPN recently that November is looking like a perfect time to return to the Octagon.

Despite not losing the interim belt, Ferguson was removed as interim champion when Khabib Nurmagomedov bested Al Iaquinta earlier this year to become lightweight champion. Ferguson was expected to meet Nurmagomedov before his injury.

”The UFC has indicated my title is gone and Khabib is the only champion at 155 pounds, but the UFC hasn’t mentioned anything official to my management. As far as I’m concerned, I’m still the true 155-pound champion. I never lost my belt.

“The doctor told me recovery time is anywhere from three-to-six months with this kind of procedure, but I heal quick. Whenever Khabib’s (expletive) ass comes back, that’s when I’ll be back. I’m thinking November.”

Ferguson, who is riding a 10-fight win streak that includes a victory over Kevin Lee last year, believes the UFC needs to make sure they don’t “kick me while I’m down.”

“That’s a big middle finger to ‘T-Ferg’ right there – that’s a kick to the groin if they do that,” Ferguson said. “At the end of the day, does the UFC really like its fighters? I’m one of their toughest fighters. Don’t kick me when I’m down.

“I missed out on pay-per-view points, my purse, a big payday; a lot of things behind the scenes. They have to either give me my title back or make sure I’m fighting under that same contract. I’ve earned that.”

New contract for Dodson

Former UFC flyweight title contender John Dodson has signed a new contract with the UFC, according to MMA Fighting.

Dodson, fighting back at bantamweight, signed a four-fight deal. He is coming off a split decision victory over Pedro Munhoz that completed his contract at the time.

The 33-year-old former Ultimate Fighter winner is 9-4 over 13 Octagon appearances. He twice faced Demetrious Johnson for the flyweight title.

Usman with “Opportunity of Lifetime”

Kamaru Usman knows Saturday night is a tremendous chance to prove himself in the UFC’s welterweight division.

Usman takes on Demian Maia in the main event of UFC Fight Night 129 live on FOX Sports 1 from Chile.

Listen in to the video above to hear Usman talk about facing Maia and what it means to his career.