Superfight possibilities shifting lower in weight

Posted on June 13, 2013, 08:42 PM by Evan Holober
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With the recent announcements of Georges St. Pierre vs. Johny Hendricks and Jon Jones vs. Alex Gustafsson for later on this year the UFC has thrown in the towel on the massive "superfight" ideas for 2013. Anderson Silva is competing against Chris Weidman, and with his biggest fight possibilities now having other challengers it is another year of Zuffa claiming they will get something done only to quietly put together challengers inside the separate divisions (which actually might have been their main goal this entire time).

The idea of champions from different divisions competing against one another is becoming irrelevant at the weight classes above welterweight. GSP has gone from speaking about moving up to middleweight (as early as 2008), to claiming it would be easier to compete at lightweight. Anderson has spoken routinely about wanting to fight Georges, but then waivers on how low he can go in weight safely. Jones stopped claiming Anderson was too much of a hero to fight against a while ago, but after hinting he would be around to fight Silva later this year decided to fight Gustafsson in October. If all win their next match-ups, which is most likely according to Vegas, then any of them competing against one another wouldn't be realistic before the summer of 2014.

Below 170lbs is a different story though. Benson Henderson has made no secret about his desire to move up and challenge GSP in a champion vs. champion scrap, and he's always been pretty big for lightweight. With Georges claiming it would be better for him to compete under welterweight (again, a stark contrast to words he spoke in interviews a few years ago), rather than above it, St. Pierre vs. Henderson no longer seems as unrealistic as it did a year ago. However, the Canadian isn't the only non-lightweight fighter Ben could take on in the future.

Anthony Pettis takes on Jose Aldo for the latter's featherweight title at UFC 163. The winner of this fight is realistically more of a valid choice to take on Ben than anybody in the lightweight division at the moment. Pettis took it to Henderson in their exciting match up at the final WEC show in December of 2010, and was considered the top contender to Ben's title before dropping to featherweight (and the only reason he did that was because he got passed over in a similar situation in 2011). Anthony has made it clear that this fight against Aldo is strictly for the purposes of getting a title shot, and after it is done he will be back at 155lbs (presumably to compete in a rematch with Ben).

Jose Aldo won't be hanging around at 145lbs much longer either. While making the featherweight division his own personal kill zone for the past 5 years Aldo has taken apart some of the biggest names in the sport. His last fight was no exception; at UFC 156 he took on what most people see as the rightfulaldo 155lb champion and outlasted Frankie Edgar in one of the best fights this year. Not only that, but he has struggled to make the featherweight limit in a few title defenses since 2011. If he gets by Pettis, in what just might be the best fight since.... Aldo vs. Edgar, then Aldo is more than ready to move up and play with the freaks at 155. 

So the question I have for you lowkickers, who would you rather see make the move up? Do you want to see Pettis move up to take on Henderson for their long-awaited rematch? Should Aldo move past Pettis, and finally bring his talents to the lightweight division? Is Ben Henderson good enough, and big enough, to take on the greatest welterweight in mma's history at 170 (or a catchweight)? Personally, I think Pettis-Henderson 2 sounds the best because I'm a huge fan of "Showtime", but any one of the match ups should be fun (although I'm not sure Henderson has much for St. Pierre). Either way you go, let us know in the comments!


Comments

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  • Entity
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    It's weird how sometimes the LHW is the most aggressive and active, then along comes another class.
    I still think the LW division is the most stacked and has been now for a while.

    Reply 11 months ago
  • grandslam
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    I believe Pettis vs Hedno II is going to be a dream re-match. The shuffle between champions in the 145 to 155 lbs category definitely makes sense.

    Talking of GSP vs Anderson and Anderson vs Jones, both cases the smaller fighter has a huge disadvantage. It is not a secrect that the smaller fighter does not want to move up in weight class for obvious reasons. Perhaps none of these fighters want to risk their legacy which, to some extent, is fair.

    To me, what make sense is Jones moving to HW and fighting the likes of JDS and Cain. Now that is going to be super fight by all standards. With all respect to Jones's skills I always felt that he was too big for a LHW but will fit very well in the HW division. I am no Jones fan but I think he will be a force to recon with in the HW as well.

    Reply 11 months ago
  • Brian Cox
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    If Dana White was serious about a Super-Fight for Silva then he should have / should just yank him from the card. Period.

    If he did yank Silva from his fight with Weidman and replaced him with Vitor Belfort and in a fight for an interim 185 belt and did so for the purposes of securing a super-fight between Silva and Jones....we wouldn't hear so much as a single boo from the fans.

    That would be a card switch that every fan would support. I certainly would. It would mean that I got ripped off for my Silva / Weidman bout and that 2 of my favorite fighters in the UFC would have to fight one another, but I wouldn't complain.

    Until Dana actually wakes up one morning and decides he really does want to to do it, then I'm really (kinda') done with listening to him on the subject of super-fights. He's never made on materialize.

    In terms of GSP, I want the Hendricks fight (and hopefully a win) and then I'd really like to see GSP fight Maia. After that, if he wants to still fight he should switch a division up or down, but none-the-less change the scenery.

    Reply 11 months ago
  • ShenronRage
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    GSP vs Aldo would be interesting, though I can't say too much about Henderson vs any of those two. If we want super-fights in the lower weight classes then we need a more exciting lightweight champion, I mean the guy hasn't finished a single fight in the UFC.

    Reply 11 months ago
  • N.C.
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    Aldo I would put over Zombie. I love the guy, but Aldo has been a level above everybody in his division for a long time. The one time it was close in Toronto, Aldo ended being sick with the flu.

    Aldo already said, he gets a LW title shot if he wins. He wins this fight, he'll get Bendo. I'm willing to bet Aldo will beat Bendo (im a bendo fan btw) with authority. setting up the GSP super fight.

    If you guys look at stats. Their both the same height. It's not that far fetched.

    Reply 10 months ago
  • ImmaBoss
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    I am all for the light weight guys moving up i mean it just sounds exciting. Would love to see Aldo vs Ben first and foremost Then Ben VS GSP depending on how the fights actually turn out lol because I am sick and tired of Anderson/GSP/Jones playing games might as well see the other champs take front stage and showcase their skills

    Reply 11 months ago
  • Kevin
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    One thing UFC has going for it is the amount of weight classes it currently posses's. Seeing another weight division added would make Super Fights, less "Super". I like the idea of seeing any of these combination of fights.

    Great for the fans, great for the sport.

    Reply 11 months ago
  • kungfurule
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    Aldo vs GSP at 155 I'd watch that hell yeah!

    Reply 11 months ago
  • Krogan
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    As always I just don't have any interest in seeing super fights. Sure if a champ from a lower weight class wants to move up and fight in a higher division then I don't see anybody stopping him but all this silly talk about catch weights and people putting pressure on champs to go and fight in sub optimal weight classes is just stupid imo.

    Reply 11 months ago
  • nimbleweed
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    Less hype but more probability of happening and from your projections more potential for fights that don't just offer the standard superfight 'who's better' novelty but real candidates for unforgettable fights... Ben vs GSP, Aldo vs Ben, Pettis vs Ben 2...

    And while we wait we get to see Pettis vs Aldo... How can anyone not think the lighter divisions are on par with LHW and HW?

    Reply 10 months ago
  • falcon4917
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    I guess it's virtually official now that we will never see a prime Silva vs Jones fight.

    Reply 10 months ago
  • watermelon fresh
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    fights at lower weights are just not **** in MMA. It's going to be tough to build a star or superfight in those division's not having BJ Penn.

    Reply 10 months ago