Okay, so he hasn’t yet. But if he’s gets past Chael Sonnen and Vitor Belfort, he will have to vacate the title before he’s allowed to compete at 205 pounds.
Why? Just because Dana White says so…
“In my opinion, [Anderson’s] got Chael, who’s earned that title shot, and he’s got Vitor Belfort. Once he fights those two guys, he’s cleaned out that division, and I will press very hard for him to move to 205 pounds…I believe that when you make a move like that, for me, it’s always all about legacy. It’s never about money or any of that [expletive], so you have to clean out the division…what he wants to do I think is keep his 185-pound title and fight at 205, which you can’t do,” White said. “You have to vacate that title and move up.”
A lot of this stems from his now infamous fighting against Damien Maia, where he seemed more concerned with “showboating” than he was with finishing the fight…which personally I found entertaining for the first three rounds while Anderson was still beating the crap out of him. But if you’re going to clown your opponent like that…you need to finish him off.
I can’t see Anderson clowning Sonnen or Belfort…or possibly Wanderlai Silva, who I still think is a possibility.