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Steve Cofield

Yahoo's Iole on big merger: The pressure is on to win

Steve Cofield
Cagewriter

All fighters feel a sense of urgency but with today's announcement that the WEC's roster is folding into the UFC, the final two WEC cards will be pressure packed. Yahoo! Sports Kevin Iole says in the short run with a few less cards on the schedule mid-level fighters up and down the UFC/WEC roster will be under the gun to win.

The increased roster depth now makes it easier for the UFC to pitch new shows to existing or new networks. If you're a fighter, you just have to win to keep yourself in the mix for what could be on the horizon in 2011.

Some of the key pressure fights at WEC 52 include:

Raphael Assuncao v. L.C. Davis
Assuncao has lost two straight which puts the Brazilian at risk. LC Davis needs a win to erase the bad taste of getting choked out by Josh Grispi.

Anthony Njokuani v. Edwards Faaloloto
At the start of 2010, Njokuani was on the fast track to a title shot at 155 pounds. His weak takedown defense did him in against Shane Roller and even more surprising he was beat on the feet by newcomer Maciej Jewtuszko. A third straight loss, especially against a WEC newcomer could be devastating to his future.

Cub Swanson v. Mackens Sermerzier
Swanson has toiled in obscurity for a while and would love nothing better than the big stage in UFC. He's been rotating between winning and losing. He needs a win here. The same goes for Sermerzier, who's on a two-fight losing streak.

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