Former UFC Lightweight Champion Frankie Edgar lost on the judge’s cards for the 3rd time in a row at Saturday night’s UFC 156, as he dropped a hard fought five round decision to 145 lb Champion Jose Aldo. Edgar once again established himself as a crowd pleaser, but with losses adding up, some type of direction to the young fighter’s career is needed. As for Aldo, he solidified a top 5 spot on today’s pound for pound lists, and is possibly heading to more ‘superfight’ style fights against Lightweights.
Generating a buzz at the post UFC 156 press conference was a text UFC President Dana White got from Lightweight top contender Anthony Pettis asking for a match with Aldo at 145 lbs.
Pettis is coming off an explosive showing in his last outing, taking out well regarded ‘Cowboy’ Donald Cerrone in the opening round. This makes him a serious contender at Lightweight, but if he could make 145 lbs, that should translate nicely into that weight class as well.
This line will likely see Aldo favored when it comes out at the sportsbooks, but it would not be in overwhelming fashion. Pettis, like Aldo, is long and lanky and brings a diversified striking game that Aldo hasn’t seen recently. Pettis would keep the line much closer than other contenders for Aldo’s next fight, such as a Chad Mendes rematch or Clay Guida. Dana make it happen.
As for Edgar, he earned kudos from White for another performance evoking the guts and heart of boxer Arturo Gatti, but a third loss in a row likely means a bit of a layoff. Look to see him again in the September timeframe.
Edgar seemed to express a preference to staying at 145 lbs, and that would probably be his best bet. The problem edgar presents for th UFC is that because of his name recognition and pay scale, getting him a couple of build up or sqquash mashes to get on the winning track doesn’t make that much sense. The UFC doesn’t tend to matchmake with those considerations in mind traditionally anyway, so look for him to face someone like Chad Mendes upon his return.
In that match, the line should come in favoring Edgar, though Mendes has looked good since he was wiped out by Aldo. Look for mendes to fight before the expected September timeframe with Edgar, so another big performance would likely lead to a tighter line against Edgar.
But make no mistake, Edgar has his back against the wall. Despite his popularity, a forth loss in a row will greatly affect his future earnings, and he really is going to be in a must win situation when he returns.