UFC president Dana White has made his pick for who he thinks the UFC’s most marketable star in the making is right now.
Over the years, everyone from Ken Shamrock to Chuck Liddell to Ronda Rousey have received some form of push from the powers that be in the UFC, regardless of their respective talents, but now for the first time in what seems like a long one, the UFC’s well of star power seems to be drying up.
Of course, the biggest in the history of the sport, Conor McGregor, is the most obvious draw right now, but he – unlike anyone who has come before him – has managed to figure out a way to avoid playing ball with the UFC brass while also understanding his own worth and earning potential to its fullest.
Sure, there’s big names like Michael Bisping, Daniel Cormier and even the likes of Joanna Jedrzejczyk, but in truth the lack of any real bonafide superstars on the rise must be worrying the UFC. They’ve injected as much as they could into the likes of Paige van Zant and Sage Northcutt but aside from a few long shots no one appears to be destined for the brights lights in the same way we saw in the likes of Rousey and McGregor in their early days.
White, however, believes one man has the potential to prove everyone wrong.
Speaking on a recent appearance on the Dan Le Batard Show, White put forth his belief that the current UFC bantamweight champ Cody Garbrandt in fact holds the most potential for fame out of the current crop.
“Our most bankable star. November 4 at Madison Square Garden, this kid who’s the world champion, he’s gonna fight. His name is Cody No Love. Very marketable guy. I think Cody No Love could be the next big star.”
Garbrandt, of course, rose to the top of the bantamweight pack when he shocked the world by dominating the long-time champ Dominick Cruz at UFC 207 and though he will be facing yet another incredibly difficult task at next month’s UFC 217 when he faces former champ TJ Dillashaw, a win over his heated rival could well propel his star power to the next level.
Cillian Cunningham, Pundit Arena