UFC/WEC Merger: 10 Biggest Names Acquired In The Merger
With the recent merger of the UFC & WEC, the UFC is acquiring some very talented fighters in the lighter weight classes.
All of the WEC fighters will now be able to showcase their skills and talents on the biggest MMA stage in the world.
The UFC acquires two new divisions, featherweight and bantamweight , along with their respective champions, as well as a crop of lightweights and their current titleholder.
With all that in mind, here's a list of the 10 biggest names the UFC is acquiring with the recent merger.
10. Chad Mendes
Undefeated prospect in the featherweight division, member of Team Alpha Male and one of Urijah Faber’s protégés.
Mendes, who is still raw as a fighter, uses powerful wresting in his fights to control his opposites from the top.
Mendes could contend and be a challenger for the featherweight title in a couple of fights.
9. Josh Grispi
The first challenger to take on Jose Aldo’s new UFC featherweight title.
Grispi, who is known for his killer guillotine choke, is 10-0 in his last 10 fights as well as a perfect 4-0 record in the WEC.
The UFC is going to need to hype up Grispi as a worthy contender to try and take away the title from a seemingly unbeatable Aldo at UFC 125 on New Year's Day.
8. Joseph Benavidez
The UFC needs to do Joseph Benavidez a favor and create the 125-pound flyweight division for him as soon as possible.
Benavidez is the prototypical flyweight fighter and could be the face for the division for a long time with his style of fighting.
Until then Benavidez will settle for being a top contender in the bantamweight divsion and will be looking for another shot at the title.
7. Mike Brown
Former WEC featherweight champion Mike Brown still has a lot left in his tank and he proved it in his last fight with a devastating TKO win over Cole Province.
Brown will have an advantage over most WEC fighters in being he was a former lightweight fighter in the UFC, so he is used to the bigger cage and fighting on the biggest stage.
If Brown can string a couple of more wins together he could be getting a rematch with champion Jose Aldo, setting up a huge featherweight fight for the UFC.
6. Anthony Pettis
The UFC could be getting a star in the making with Anthony “Showtime” Pettis.
Pettis has recently been featured on MTV’s World of Jenks, which showed an inside view into his life. And if you weren’t a fan of him before the show, that piece had to win you over. (If you haven’t seen the episode do yourself a favor and go watch it.)
If Pettis can get by Benson Henderson, which is no small task, at WEC 53 and become the last WEC lightweight champion, he will get the first crack at the winner of UFC’s 125 title bout between champ Frankie Edgar and No. 1 contender Gray Maynard.
5. Miguel Torres
The former WEC bantamweight championship is going to be one of the most exciting additions in the merger.
Torres has only gone to a decision once in the last five years and it was versus Takeya Mizugaki, which was one of the fights of the year candidates of 2009. Torres brings an unorthodox style of fighting with him and is an extremely exciting person to watch.
People who watch the UFC and haven’t seen Miguel Torres fight will be instantly in love with his style and the charismatic attitude and personality that he brings.
4. Dominick Cruz
The Current WEC bantamweight champion.
Dominick Cruz’s fast hands, boxing and wrestling skills make him an exciting fighter to watch.
Cruz will be looking forward to making his second title defense at WEC 53 against Scott Jorgensen, which would make him the UFC’s first bantamweight champion as well as keeping his undefeated record fighting as a bantamweight.
3. Benson Henderson
WEC’s lightweight champion and a rising star in the lightweight division, Benson Henderson could be the No. 1 contender for the UFC’s lightweight title with a win over No. 6 on this list Anthony Pettis at WEC 53 in December.
Henderson, who has been dominant since joining the WEC, is 5-0 for the organization and a winner of his last 11 fights.
Henderson could be a force for the winner of the Edgar/Maynard matchup with his good wrestling skills and his very strong submission game.
2. Urijah Faber
The longest reigning champion in WEC history and the biggest draw in the WEC. Faber could be utilized in the same way in the UFC.
Faber is the perfect fighter to get the casual fans accustomed to the lighter weight classes and could be a possible champion again, but this time in the bantamweight division.
1. Jose Aldo
The current WEC and soon to be UFC featherweight champion, Jose Aldo. Aldo is arguably one of the best pound for pound fighters in the sport.
He is one of the most exciting fighters to watch as well as a finisher, which is a great quality to have as a champion and a key reason why he will win over the hearts of most UFC fans.
Fans won't have to wait too long to see Aldo make his UFC debut, as he makes his first featherweight title defense at UFC 125 on January 1 as the co-main event versus No. 9 on this list Josh Grispi.
BONUS: Brittany Palmer
WEC ring girl and straight up babe will be joining the UFC.