As Frankie Edgar attended UFC 159 this past weekend in his home state, the New Jersey native was reminded how much a fighter’s marketability factors into matchmaking.
Chael Sonnen, who on paper had a weak case for a shot at UFC light-heavyweight champion Jon Jones‘ title, nonetheless got the pay-per-view headliner, and by all early indications, he helped make it a financially successful event.
Edgar admits he’ll never by the trash-talker Sonnen is. However, the former lightweight champion, who’s currently stuck in a three-fight losing streak following a drop in weight class and a failed bid at featherweight champ Jose Aldo‘s belt, believes one more win could get him another shot.
“Let’s be real about the way this goes,” he told MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) on the night of UFC 159. “It’s not always the No. 1 contender that gets the title shots. Look at tonight. It’s who they invest money in and who’s a known name. In the lighter weights, just being that I’ve fought seven title fights in a row, I think I’m that guy. So I think it makes sense for them, and it obviously makes sense for me.”
That’s why he believes he’s just a win or two away from another fight with Aldo, or with Antony Pettis, who meets the champ in August at UFC 163. One pay-per-view event earlier, Edgar (15-4-1 MMA, 9-4-1 UFC) meets fellow featherweight Charles Oliveira (16-3 MMA, 4-3 UFC) at UFC 162.
“I’m going to go out there and fight to the best of my ability, and I hope it’s enough to get the attention toward my way,” he said.
Edgar is a bit of a riddle. He’s lost three straight and is 1-3-1 in his past five fights. But even the losses – two to Benson Henderson and one to Aldo – were close, and Edgar easily could have won any or all. A victory over Oliveira likely will shoot him up the USA TODAY Sports/MMAjunkie.com MMA featherweight rankings, where he’s an honorable mention simply due to the lack of a win in the division.
For the first time in three years and six fights, he won’t headline a show when he fights at UFC 162. Edgar knows title losses are largely forgivable, especially when they’re so close, but he also knows a defeat to Oliveira could be a substantial setback for his title hopes.
So is it refreshing not to be the center of attention and to have a little pressure taken off him?
“It kind of is, but what are we doing this for?” he said. “I want to do this to be the best and carry cards and be a headline guy. You don’t want to get comfortable saying, ‘It’s kind of nice to not having all the attention.’ That’s what pays the bills.”
So in his current training camp, he’s working diligently on one obvious hole in his game: slow starts. For the first time in seven fights, Edgar won’t fight more than three rounds. That makes a quick start and winning rounds decisively even more important.
“I’m always trying to improve in all areas, and that’s definitely something that being in these close fights brings to my attention,” he said. “I’ve got to either do something to make this gap wider, where there’s no doubt, or finish fights. So I’m definitely working on it in the gym.”view original article >>
Why did Georges St-Pierre leave? Why did one of MMA’s biggest stars – a defending champion – decide to walk away from the sport?Filed under: News, UFC, Videos read news >>
UFC Bantamweight champion Cody Garbrandt calls in ahead of his UFC 217 bout against TJ Dillashaw and discusses TJ as an opponent, his back injury, wanting Mighty Mouse next, expecting his first child read news >>
Greg Hardy has insisted he has lofty ambitions on the brink of his first amateur MMA bout, telling TMZ he feels as though he can win the UFC heavyweight title. Hardy, the former Carolina Panthers and read news >>
Two-time UFC welterweight title challenger Stephen Thompson said Jorge Masvidal will be ready to throw down when they meet at UFC 217. “So am I.”Filed under: News, UFC, Videos read news >>
Welterweight Jorge Masvidal discusses his upcoming fight against Stephen Thompson at UFC 217 and how well he matches up against champion Tyron Woodley. read news >>
Fighters from Saturday’s UFC 217 event took home UFC Athlete Outfitting pay, a program that launched after the UFC’s deal with Reebok.Filed under: News, UFC read news >>
For James Vick, excessive nerves displayed by some UFC fighters before walking out is a “sign of mental weakness.”Filed under: News, Radio Highlight, UFC, Videos read news >>
Frankie Edgar's Cinderella Man storyline was one of the most interesting parts of the UFC 218 card. Unfortunately, the event will have to plug on without him with the news that Edgar has withdrawn fr read news >>
After 11 months on the sidelines, Sage Northcutt looked sharp in his return to lightweight, cruising to a decision win over Michel Quinones.Filed under: Featured, News, UFC read news >>
Clay Guida thinks UFC Fight Night 120 opponent Joe Lauzon took a few unnecessary strikes, but he was happy to put a “stamp and an exclamation point” on the last fight of his current UFC contract.File read news >>