2006 was year of the welterweight. That year saw great fights from Georges St Pierre, Matt Hughes, BJ Penn, Karo Parisyan, Diego Sanchez, and so on and so on. 2007 was the year of the lightweight, not for any specific breakout fighter, but because the division as a whole gained a reputation for always having the best fights. So who’s up next for best division? Could it be … the middleweight division?
Now before you call me crazy, read this:
Reports out of Xtreme Couture suggested that he looked more like a natural middleweight and the evidence from the weigh-in at UFC 79 seem to suggest that he’s not cutting much weight at 205. There Silva would have a quicker and easier road to the title and is an attractive matchup with either Anderson Silva or Dan Henderson. Hughes has also long entertained thoughts of moving up to 185 and could try to rejuvenate him career there as well.
Adding Wanderlei Silva and Matt Hughes to a division that just got Evan Tanner and Dan Henderson would certainly do a lot to shore up the deficiencies that made the middleweight division the runt of the 2007 litter. And who knows … it looks like the momentum is starting to shift towards Matt Lindland possibly returning in 2008.
There’s a lot of really big ‘ifs’ involved in the middleweight division shaping up for 2008. But if all that shit did happen, it would be pretty damned awesome.