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Edson Barboza wants out of the UFC; where will he land?

  • It's time for a new home for Edson Barboza. #UFC #UFC248
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Modified 08 Mar 2020, 08:50 IST

Lightweight Edson Barboza
Lightweight Edson Barboza

Not just one of the most dangerous kickers in UFC history, but in all of MMA wants a change. The former New Jersey native turned ATT pupil wants to be released from his contract.

Just a day after the UFC 248 presser where Khabib admitted he worried about the multi kicks from the Brazilian; he's dropped this bomb. The long time lightweight contender was also looking to make a move in weight classes, down to featherweight. His run recently has led to that decision as he's gone 1-4 in his last 5 fights, with one win sandwiched between 2 losses on either side.

Although weight cutting has never been a difficult issue for him, 145 is not out of the realm. With his cold streak and others warming up he has slid down to 10th in the rankings. With that in mind, it should also be remembered that the ranking system is flawed.

Whether Khabib or Tony win on April 18th it's a safe assumption that Conor McGregor can and will get the next shot if he wants it, despite the Irishman looking better at 170. Edson at #10 would not see another title shot for roughly 3 years. That puts him at about to turn 38. By then his skills would be tremendously diminished.

So where would he go? It's not known publicly yet where he'd like to be; but, two organizations could use him right now — Bellator MMA and The PFL. In either organization, he'd be able to pick his spot at 155 or 145. It's not likely that he'd then just hang up the gloves. With PFL season 3 soon to launch he'd be on the perfect time table. In Bellator with the Featherweight Grand Prix going on, he could slide in as a replacement — remember, AJ McKee is nursing an LCL injury — or he could get a crack at the title once it's done.

At lightweight, there'd be some amazing matchups for him there; Michael Chandler, Aviv Gozali, Soren Bak, Benson Henderson to name just a few. It would be less likely he'd take on either fellow Brazilians, the Pitbull brothers.

He remains in the company record book with a stat that will be very hard to equal — KO's with every type of kick finish. He did show his class in his public request for the release via his twitter page. He thanked the company for the 10-year union, but it was time to leave.

Published 08 Mar 2020, 08:50 IST
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