MMA Fighters We Can't Wait to See Move Weight Divisions

Matt Molgaard@MattmolgaardCorrespondent IIIMarch 15, 2013

MMA Fighters We Can't Wait to See Move Weight Divisions

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    Fans love to toss about hypothetical matches, often casting a heavyweight fighter in a proposed bout with a light heavyweight, or a lightweight tangling with the larger welterweight.

    It’s just one of those things we do as mixed martial arts fans, and I believe, to a degree, it’s fairly natural.

    We all knew Frankie Edgar was an undersized lightweight.

    Just like we all know that Chris Weidman is a certified light heavyweight who has mastered the art of trimming a startling amount of weight to hit the 185-pound limit. The guy, like Gleison Tibau, is clearly huge when compared to the average man competing in the same weight class.

    Every now and then, a specific fight or a long stretch of dominance calls for a shift in weight division. When a man cleans out his division by abusing the top-10 challengers, what do we expect of him? A move to new territory, where new challenges await.

    Get a look at six fighters we’d all love to see approach a new weight division.

Jon Jones

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    Let me rattle off a handful of names for you very quickly. Ryan Bader, Lyoto Machida and Quinton Jackson. What do they have in common? They’re all physical animals.

    How about a few more names to mull over… like, say, Mauricio Rua, Rashad Evans and Vitor Belfort?

    Those are some impressive fighters with some legendary resumes. Of those listed, in fact, Bader is the only man to never hold a major title.   

    When you’ve abused your weight division in such fashion, obliterating the majority of those ranked in the Top 10, it’s time to take a step up and see how you fare one weight class north.

    Here’s hoping Jones makes a move to heavyweight in 2014. The man has no more than three truly compelling fights that await him at 205 pounds.

Daniel Cormier

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    It is no secret that Daniel Cormier is an undersized heavyweight.

    Much like former top pound-for-pound considerate Fedor Emelianenko, Cormier uses his small frame to his advantage, capitalizing on his speed and agility.

    Thus far, it has worked like a charm.

    But the general consensus is that “DC” is the one man with the tools to defeat Jon Jones at light heavyweight. If he can do that, he’ll immediately cement himself as one of the greatest active combatants on the planet.

    He’ll also hold bragging rights. Being the man to beat the unbeatable should draw some serious attention.  

Roy Nelson

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    I think most of us want to see Roy Nelson optimize his game. Competing at heavyweight, I just don’t think that is possible.

    Roy is a very capable heavyweight, but the chances of him vying for a title anytime soon seem amazingly unlikely.

    A drop to 205 might be the key to the title Nelson has sought for years on end.

B.J. Penn

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    In case you missed it, B.J. Penn got pretty pissed off at me when I wrote that Rory MacDonald had embarrassed him at UFC on FOX 5.

    I can understand why Penn may have taken my words and perceived them in a manner not intended. My comments were not meant to be taken as derogatory, at all.

    But at the end of the day, the loss to MacDonald was completely and utterly one-sided.

    Had Penn himself been sitting cage-side and it had been Georges St-Pierre in there taking the throttling that Penn took, I have little doubt he himself would declare that an "embarrassing" beatdown.

    That said, I think Penn still has the tools and desire to smash some heads at 155 pounds.

    He’s always been undersized at welterweight, and if he chooses to continue competing at 170 pounds, we might see a few more ugly throttlings.

    Penn belongs at 155, where he’s potentially capable of stopping any man competing.

    Will we see “The Prodigy” regain the success he enjoyed in the earlier stages of his career? Perhaps, assuming he’s willing to stop insisting on fighting the bigger man and head back for 155.

Lyoto Machida

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    Lyoto Machida has always been a small light heavyweight.

    I’m entirely convinced he only competes at 205 because close friend and training partner Anderson Silva sits atop the middleweight division, ruling with an iron fist… and knee… and kick… and, you get it.

    If you take Silva out of the 185 mix, Machida makes a noticeably easy cut to middleweight and more than likely wrecks the entire division.

    It’s too bad we’ve got to see one technically masterful fighter abandon a weight class in order for another technically masterful fighter fill his shoes.

    In the perfect world, these two toe the line for the right to be called the best fighter south of 200 pounds.

Jose Aldo

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    Aldo has been complaining of difficulties in cutting weight to hit the 145-pound limit for some time now. He’s already as big as some of the average lightweights, and with a little bulking up, he’d be a monster, while likely losing very little in regards to speed.

    The man has the tools to batter anyone south of 170 pounds, and it’s about time he targeted the lightweights. There just isn’t all too much more for “Scarface” to accomplish at featherweight.

    You bashed 'em at 145, now take that brute violence to 155!


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