When it comes to one the divisions with the most talked about stars, there is no question that the featherweights rule that category. Conor McGregor has become a mega star that has become innovative for his offense both on the promotional side of things as well as in the octagon. He dazzles in every aspect of the sport of MMA. But most people seem to forget that there is whole of slew of people in this division that vie for McGregor’s belt and all his glory. Today I will discuss how the featherweight division still has a lot of promise even with McGregor holding the belt hostage.
The State of the UFC Featherweight Division
As we look at the top of this division, there is a clear picture when UFC 200 ended as Jose Aldo took the Interim UFC Featherweight Title in a decision victory over Frankie Edgar. The two men are easily number one and two in the rankings of the division. Aldo, being the interim champion, is going to get a shot at revenge against McGregor sometime in the foreseeable future. He will try to fully reclaim what had been his for so long in the title.
Edgar must now fight his way back to contention and that is going to be a big hill to climb. The division features the likes of Max Holloway who has become one of the hottest fighters not just in the division but in the entire promotion. He has won eight in a row. Holloway is interesting considering his last loss came at the hands of McGregor. Holloway believes that he is more than ready to take a shot at the title. Many fans believe he is future champion in the division. The wins he has are against the divisions best. Consider that he just beat a fellow top five fighter in Ricardo Llamas.
There are also a few breakout stars in the division that are good to keep an eye on. There is Brian Ortega, who some are saying has the best ground game in the division. Cub Swanson is also someone at 145 pounds who still has a lot of potential. He has an upcoming fight with Tatsuya Kawajiri in Salt Lake City. This fight will have UFC matchmakers watching very closely. Men like Dennis Bermudez can still fight for a chance at the gold in the future. He still has a ways to go as he is still young. Bermudez hasn’t even scratched the surface of his career as a featherweight.
A man who is very much in the discussion for next big thing and is luckily in the featherweight division is Yair Rodriguez. Rodriguez has been dazzling fans with his innovative karate style and acrobatic moves. He is getting some buzz around the UFC and has become someone who makes the weight class even more entertaining. . Rodriguez is set to headline the UFC’s return to Salt Lake City against Alex Caceres. He is sure to give the fans another entertaining fight. Rodriguez looks to keep making his climb to the top of the division and surely has what it takes to take the belt to Mexico. He could become the second Mexican UFC champion joining Cain Velasquez.
Hopefully the division can keep being as entertaining, as it has been the past couple of years. Next week, I will cover the very competitive UFC lightweight division and where it is headed.