Cub Swanson is finally getting what he wants. For over a year now the featherweight contender has been asking for big names or a title shot. On Saturday night in Austin, Texas, he will get one of those big names in the main event spotlight when he steps in the cage against Frankie Edgar. Edgar has been where Swanson wants to be. Edgar is a former lightweight champion and has been a mainstay of main events and title fights since he upset BJ Penn in Abu Dhabi way back when. Edgar’s speedy striking game combined with his top notch wrestling is what got him to this point in his career. He is coming off a dominant performance over BJ Penn back in July. Swanson is riding a six fight win streak and finally got a main event fight back in June. He decisioned a very game Jeremy Stephens, but it still wasn’t enough to earn him a title shot. Swanson has said that the UFC has promised him a title shot if he can get past Edgar. Here are a few things that Cub must do to make that happen.

Start Strong

This one is vital for anyone who faces Edgar. “The Answer” always seems to get stronger as the fight goes longer, but he has been known to leave openings in the early rounds. Big rounds early in his fights against Gray Maynard and Benson Henderson had Edgar playing catch up for the rest of the fight. Swanson can’t give Edgar time to feel him out and get into a rhythm. Swanson has to come out early and establish some form of dominance that gets Edgar off his game and puts the judges on notice.

Leg Kicks

This one right here is straight out of Jose Aldo’s playbook. Aldo is known for having some of the most vicious leg kicks in the sport and he put those to use against Edgar. Swanson should make use of this technique as well. It is just a well known fact at this point that Edgar does not gas out, so you have to do something to slow him down. Leg kicks are the perfect option to do this. Swanson should focus on Edgar’s legs early just like Aldo did. Edgar is a master of timing and in that Aldo fight he began to catch the kicks later on, but the damage had already been done.

Go For The Finish

Now this might not necessarily be a key to beating Frankie Edgar, but it is key to getting Swanson where he wants to be. He has been told by the UFC that he will get a title shot if he wins here, but with Conor McGregor looming in the distance, I wouldn’t be so sure. Dana White has even stated in the past that what he loves about Swanson is he goes for the finish, even later in the fight like he did against Denis Siver. Edgar has never been finished in his career, but he has shown a tendency to get hit by big shots over the course of the fight. If Swanson sees blood in the water he must swarm. Being the first man to finish Frankie Edgar will certainly earn him another shot against Jose Aldo.

About The Author

Trey Downey
Staff Writer

A Central Florida native, Trey Downey's interest in MMA came after a trip to Blockbuster and the rental of UFC 47 on VHS. He has been blogging about the sport since 2011 and hosted a podcast called The TD Experience focusing on football and MMA (touchdowns and takedowns). Trey studied radio and television at the University of Central Florida and will soon be attending the Connecticut School of Broadcasting. Trey enjoys watching sports, pro wrestling and is an avid runner.