In an instant bantamweight classic at UFC Vegas 7 last night, former lightweight titleholder, Frankie ‘The Answer’ Edgar put his now 135-pound peers, on distinct notice. Withstanding the pace-pushing, aggressive approach from perennial contender, Pedro Munhoz – the future Hall of Famer got off to winning ways at his new home, putting to bed two consecutive featherweight woes.
Over the course of their five-round main event, Munhoz battered Edgar’s left calf with gruelling offence but was countered off the fence, time and time again on his way to a close, razor-thin split decision defeat. Edgar – who displayed some of his ever-present wrestling chaps to score two successful takedowns, managed to just about edge out the guillotine specialist on two of three judge’s scorecards.
Entering the tie, Edgar held the #8 rank at 145-pounds, but laid out his blueprints for a bantamweight title siege in the not too distant future, in his post-fight interview with UFC commentator, Jon Anik – following his divisional debut victory.
“It’s good to be on the winning side,” Edgar said. “That was a hell of a fight. Pedro’s (Munhoz) a stud. I heard a lot of MFers barking that I’m old, I’m slow. I definitely should’ve proved them all wrong. I still got some fight in this tank, baby, and we’re going to make a run at ’35 (135-pounds).“
Edgar, 38, held 155-pound spoils from April 2010 till the final quarter of the next annum, securing three title retentions. Following two title matchups with ‘Smooth’ Benson Henderson – the Ricardo Almeida and Mark Henry pupil tested featherweight waters, and in his thirteen fight, 8-5 tenure – challenged for championship honours on three separate occasions.
Finally making the drop to bantamweight, Edgar spoke highly of his performance, noting the carryover of his speed to a new division. For the Toms River native, according to him, “the sky’s the limit“.
“(I felt) better than I was at the other weights,” Edgar explained. “I didn’t carry any of the weight – I just got me feet wet. I think the sky’s the limit for myself. I didn’t look slow in there. Pedro’s a top dog, and that makes me a top dog, baby. We back.” (H/T MMA Junkie)
Edgar seemingly still has some ways to go before that planned title tilt, however. Last night, UFC president, Dana White looks to have finally cemented number-two contender, Aljamain Sterling’s title opportunity opposite recent vacant title taker, Petr Yan. The Russian boxing ace scored the vacant crown at UFC 251 in July – taking a knockout win over Edgar’s two-time featherweight nemesis, José Aldo.