UFC Fight Night 57: Edgar vs. Swanson Date: November 22, 2014 Location: Austin, Texas Venue: Frank Erwin Center Broadcast: FS1 UFC Featherweight Contender Frankie Edgar The closest fighter the UFC has to a real-life Rocky Balboa, Frankie “The Answer” Edgar (17-4-1) has surprised everyone with his never-say-die attitude and come-from-behind ability that has led him to career-defining victories over B.J. Penn (three times) and his former arch-nemesis Gray Maynard. Winner of seven “Fight of the Night” awards, Edgar comes out of Renzo Gracie’s East Coast fight team with a chip on his shoulder and a Jersey attitude that have turned him into one of the most impressive lighter-weight fighters in the world. Opponents can never count Edgar out, and the 33-year-old former lightweight champ has fought for the 155-pound strap six times and the featherweight title once, fighting competitively in each and every single one of those fights, win or lose. After losing three controversial decision losses in a row against Benson Henderson (twice) and Jose Aldo, Edgar defeated Charles Oliveira at UFC 162 to jump back into title contention at 145lbs. He then coached TUF 19 opposite Penn, and then at the TUF 19 Finale knocked out Penn for a third win over “The Prodigy.” The win over Penn reaffirmed Edgar’s status as one of the best featherweights in the world and now the UFC has matched him up against fellow top contender Cub Swanson at UFC Fight Night 57 in what should serve as a title eliminator in the featherweight division. UFC Featherweight Contender Cub Swanson Former WEC featherweight title contender Cub Swanson (21-5) had a pretty good run in the WEC leading up to a title shot loss to UFC champion Jose Aldo, but he was knocked out by the champ in eight seconds and has had to work his way back up the ladder. That was in 2009, and Swanson has worked extremely hard to become a different — and better — fighter now than he was then. He is 30 years of age now and a bonafide title contender in the UFC. Since coming over to the UFC, he has gone 6-1 with wins over Jeremy Stephens, Dennis Siver, Dustin Poirier, Charles Oliveira, Ross Pearson and George Roop. He has looked amazing in the UFC, and with another win would be very deserving of a title shot. The promotion told Swanson he could wait on the sidelines for another crack at Aldo (or Chad Mendes, should he beat Aldo) but Swanson chose to take another fight and the UFC matched him up against Frankie Edgar, and he’ll meet the former lightweight champion in the five-round main event of UFC Fight Night 57. Opening UFC Fight Night 57 Main Event Analysis: MMA oddsmaker Nick Kalikas made Edgar a -190 favorite (bet $190 to win $100) while Swanson opened as a +150 underdog (bet $100 to win $150) at Several Bookmakers. This is a fantastic fight between two of the top featherweight contenders in the world, and it could be a Fight of the Year contender when it’s all said and done. Edgar is the former lightweight champion and has looked tremendous at 145lbs, barely losing to champion Jose Aldo and defeating Charles Oliveira and BJ Penn in dominant fashion. He is one of the best fighters in the world at any weight class, and if he beats Swanson could get another title shot. But that’s easier said than done, because Swanson has quietly turned into one of the best 145ers on the planet himself. He is currently riding a six-fight win streak with four knockouts, and with a win over Edgar would be extremely deserving of a featherweight title shot. I think this is a very close fight that could go either way, but Edgar is the former champ and historically has received more support from bettors. Edgar deserves to be the favorite here, and that’s why he opened as one, but don’t count Swanson out in what should be a tremendous featherweight fight.