The Ultimate Fighter 14: Just How Good Is Tony Ferguson?

Dale De Souza@@DaleDeSouzaMMAAnalyst IDecember 4, 2011

(Photos by Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)
(Photos by Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)

After his bout with Yves Edwards, Tony Ferguson escaped with a unanimous decision victory that honestly was not a lopsided victory at all.

As a matter of fact, the argument could be made that Ferguson lost the fight 29-28 because although rounds two and three were not the most action packed rounds in the world, Edwards was landing the more significant strikes in those rounds. Even though Edwards did hurt Ferguson and found a home for a few head kicks, few would argue against Tony Ferguson winning the fight.

After all, aggression is always such an important part of the fight, and while Yves had his moments where he was more the aggressor than Ferguson, Ferguson had moments after the first round in which he just seemed to be putting the pressure on Edwards.

Joe Rogan is not a man whose words are taken seriously sometimes, nor is he a person that many fans or experts put much stock into as far as his MMA commentary goes, but to say that Ferguson's fight for Edwards was a good learning experience for "El Cucuy" was probably one of the most accurate things Rogan's ever said.

See, the MMA World's Lightweight division is stacked in 2011, just as it was stacked in 2009 and 2010, just like it'll be stacked in 2012, and for the longest time now, this "Golden Era" for the Lightweights has made the title pictures so intriguing to where a promoter can claim that their Lightweight division is loaded with a consistent batch of challengers, and they would actually be right.

The Lightweight division is that loaded right now; its loaded to where any Lightweight, at any given time, can score a big win and earn an almost-overnight argument towards being either a title contender or a dark horse, or even just a little something known as "the next Lightweight Champion".

(Photos by Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)
(Photos by Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)

Right now, Ferguson is a three-fight veteran of the UFC, and to not get things twisted, he did have a bit of trouble with Edwards, but that was to be expected. The basic gist of the situation is that Ferguson is good and has a lot of potential, but in a division widely regarded as one of the two most stacked divisions in MMA, Ferguson is not title-ready,

There's nothing wrong with that; all it means is Ferguson has some more work to do.

Ideas for future opponents for Ferguson have been suggested, and so far, the suggestions have actually been good because they've sounded pretty realistic; the suggested names are guys that are not weak names but are also still in the "rising" stage, and considering Ferguson's camp, it's reasonable to trust the speculation that illuminates over one or more scenarios of a win for Ferguson, just as it's reasonable to trust the possibility of Ferguson possibly being defeated.

Right now, Ferguson has shown the world that he's good enough to hang with 60-fight veterans, longtime mainstays, and even fan favorites with entertaining nicknames, and that's a good start, but now, it's on to the long road ahead.

Now is the time when we have to ask how good Ferguson really is and how good he can be.

So with that, just how good is Tony Ferguson?

That's your cue, "El Cucuy."