Being a training partner of Georges St-Pierre’s at Tristar Gym, the idea of fighting for the UFC welterweight title was one Rory MacDonald tried to brush off as much as possible.

Now, despite coming off a loss to Robbie Lawler, MacDonald knows he has a golden opportunity this weekend at UFC 170 to position himself right back in the title talk with a win over Demian Maia.

“Now that the door is kind of open for the title, I can just go back to being myself and taking one fight at a time,” said MacDonald, during a recent interview with

Despite stringing together five consecutive victories, including wins over Nate Diaz, BJ Penn and Jake Ellenberger, the prospects of a title fight with GSP seemed bleak. St-Pierre, though, vacated the title and stepped away from MMA.

A new champion will be crowned next month when Lawler faces Johny Hendricks for the vacant belt.

In Maia, MacDonald (15-2) will be facing a Brazilian jiu-jitsu world champion, but he plans to stick to his own game plan, saying, “I want to stay in my realm and not stress about getting his his realm.

“I’m just going to go out there, I’m going to pull the trigger, and I’m going to be myself out there.”