UFC Flyweights: New Division Is Starting Off on the Wrong Foot

Chris AlfaroContributor IIIJanuary 13, 2012

UFC Flyweights: New Division Is Starting Off on the Wrong Foot

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    This March will mark the promotional debut of the UFC flyweight division.

    To kick things off, four fighters will take part in a mini-tournament to determine who the inaugural champion will be.

    Fans have been clamoring for this new division ever since the WEC folded into the UFC, and it looks like they'll be treated to some great fights.

    But it looks like these fighters are going to struggle to find their footing in the UFC.

    Here's why.

Weak Introduction

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    Launching the new division will be a UFC on FX card in March. 

    Doesn't that seem a little odd?

    The launch of a new division will be taking place on a free card on a second-tier channel.

    With something as historic as the UFC launching its eighth division, you'd think they'd put a little more hype behind it. Make it one of the features of a UFC on FOX card or put them as the co-main event of a pay per view card.

    Let people know that this division is coming in serious style. Don't bury it on a small card.

Less Exposure

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    Like the WEC transfers in bantamweight and featherweight, the flyweights aren't going to get the same amount of exposure as the heavier weight classes.

    Since UFC 125 last year, only 13 bantamweight and featherweight fights have appeared on a pay per view main card. This is including title fights. 

    That's 13 fights in 16 events.

    Expect the flyweights to get similar treatment and have to struggle for even the top talent to be displayed.

Lack of Talent

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    The new division is kicking off with a four man tournament.

    And then what?

    The UFC hasn't announced a single other fighter they've signed for the division or whether or not anybody else is moving down.

    Fans need to know about more fighters. Sean Shelby needs to begin to speculate about who'll be fighting the newly crowned champ. Fans want to start making a top 10 so the division actually takes a shape.

    How can we be excited about a weight class when there's only four men fighting in it?

No Big Names

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    One of the things that's allowed the featherweights and bantamweights to gain some traction has been the big names in the divisions.

    Dominick Cruz, Urijah Faber, Jose Aldo and Kenny Florian all were names people recognized and could get excited to watch.

    The biggest names flyweight has are Demterious Johnson and Joseph Benavidez. The other two men  Ian McCall and Yasuhiro Urushitani are complete unknowns to casual fans.

    To really kick of this division, people need names that they can get excited about and the list is looking pretty slim.

Conclusion

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    While the flyweights will likely begin to find their footing in time, it's not going to be easy.

    There just isn't enough information out their for people to really get excited about.

    To truly kick of this weight class, we need more names, more fighters, more opportunities to see these men in action.

    As it stands now, it looks like the flyweight are poised to stumble out of the gate.