5 Reasons the Cerrone vs. Pettis Winner Deserves a UFC Title Shot

Jeffrey McKinneyContributor IIIJanuary 26, 2013

5 Reasons the Cerrone vs. Pettis Winner Deserves a UFC Title Shot

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    Just hours away from UFC on Fox 6, much of the talk about tonight's card has either been about the main event flyweight championship fight or Quinton "Rampage" Jackson. 

    While Demetrious Johnson and John Dodson deserve all the hype they can get, and Jackson gaining attention for what will be his final fight in the UFC, another bout also deserves attention. 

    That bout would be the battle between lightweights Anthony Pettis and Donald Cerrone. 

    Both former WEC stars have had great UFC careers thus far, and a win should put either man in the title picture. 

    Let's look at the reasons why the winner should be the next number one contender. 

They Have Defeated Top Competition

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    Both Pettis and Cerrone have defeated some of the best lightweight fighters in the world. 

    Cerrone holds wins against Melvin Guillard, Dennis Siver and Charles Oliveria. 

    Pettis on the other hand has victories over Joe Lauzon and current champ Benson Henderson

    Both men have good wins in the division and should be close to the top of the heap. 

Both Men Bring an Exciting Fight Style

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    One thing that Pettis and Cerrone have in common is they are finishers. 

    Between the two fighters, Pettis has only gone the distance five times in 17 fights while Cerrone has only gone the distance seven times in 24 fights. 

    Both men are great strikers as well as good ground fighters. 

    No matter where the fight goes, it has the potential to be an exciting finish. 

Both Have Been Waiting in the Wings for a While

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    Although at one point Donald Cerrone may have cared more about exciting fights than title shots, Anthony Pettis was waiting for title fight. 

    After the WEC folded, Pettis was promised a title fight. 

    While Pettis waited though, then UFC lightweight champ Frankie Edgar had fought to a draw against Gray Maynard. 

    Injuries pushed their rematch back even more and Pettis opted to fight instead of wait. 

    That decision may have cost him a title shot as he lost his first UFC bout against Clay Guida

    Despite this though, Pettis has continued to fight on winning his last two fights after the Guida fight. 

    Cerrone has looked like every bit of a title contender since joining the UFC, with the exception of his lone UFC loss to Nate Diaz. 

    Despite the Diaz fight though, Cerrone has gone through every fighter the UFC has put in front of him. 

Both Have History with Benson Henderson

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    There is no love lost between current lightweight champion Benson Henderson and both Pettis and Cerrone. 

    Pettis was the last man to defeat Henderson Back in 2010. More so than the win, many people will remember what is now known as the "Showtime Kick."

    Although Henderson lost the WEC lightweight title to Pettis, he got the last laugh as he would get the first crack at the UFC lightweight title. 

    Cerrone is also no stranger to Henderson, having faced and lost twice to the champ back in the WEC. 

    Both men would love another shot at Henderson if he gets past Gilbert Melendez

They Would Be a Great Challenge for Gilbert Melendez

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    Although Pettis or Cerrone should be next in line after tonight's fight, we don't know exactly who they would fight. 

    Henderson will defend his title against Gilbert Melendez next in what should be another exciting fight. 

    Melendez is the long reigning Strikeforce lightweight champion, and rightfully deserves his shot at the UFC title. 

    That being said, it could be Melendez who walks out as the new UFC lightweight champion. 

    Both Cerrone and Pettis would be just as much of an exciting challenge for Melendez as they would Henderson.