I don't think you necessarily have to go off a ranking system and say #2 gets next shot. Because there is timing issues, injuries and a variety of factors that go into it. The problem is right now we are seeing fighters coming out of no where to jump guys that are obviously ahead of them in "line". For example right now you could give Bigfoot a title shot because of the current options available. He may not even be ranked in the top 5 but it would be understandable by most fans and fighters. But if they put Frank Mir back in there for a title shot then that would cause a bigger fuss. Most of it is common sense though. Just common sense that literally over a dozen fighters are more deserving of a LHW title shot then Chael Sonnen. IMO it's very easy to see who should be fighting for the title next.
I don't see how Bigfoot is justifiable. And I realize more than just you are say it is.
Less than 1 year ago he was utterly creamed by the guy they would be putting him up against. Creamed. Bloody mess, had no shot, round 1.
Since then he KO'd a guy who blew his knee out, Browne was barely top 10 if he was top 10. He then faces OVereem, and he does KO him. But he was getting his ass handed to him the whole fight up until that exchange. Not only did he look goofy and slow standing. But he was slammed by Overeem. It would be sort of understandable if he went out there and beat up Overeem in dominating fashion. But he getting handled until cocky Reem gassed in the 3rd and finally got caught. As good/great to see as that Bigfoot KO was, that is the reality of it.
I don't see how that situation would be justifiable. Fighters have sat out longer to wait for an opponent.
All comes down to idiot Bones Jones though. If he just accepts the easy fight back when Sonnen did originally, he could have smashed him. Then Vitor never would have came into the picture, and we wouldn't have delusional Vitor still claiming to be a champion and the rightful #1 contender at 205. He could have realized he was a 185er and called out Anderson. To which we would have an Anderson defense scheduled. Hendo would be getting or had gotten his shot that he deserves. Winner of Gustaf/Mousasi could be for a title shot. And this goofy mess at LHW would have never happened.
Its Bones fault.