Legends: My Top Five WEC Fighters
The WEC may have become defunct back in 2010, but it produced a lot of really talented fighters during it’s nine year running time. Boasting some of the best fighters in the world from the lower weight classes, the WEC could claim to have some of the fastest and most explosive fighters on the planet.
Aldo fought eight times in the WEC, finishing seven of his opponents by KO/TKO and going to the judges scorecards once against Urijah Faber. The Brazilian quickly became a feared striker in the featherweight division and claimed the title at WEC 44 in 2009, knocking out Mike Brown inside of two rounds. Aldo is now the UFC featherweight champion, unbeaten in four fights for the promotion and will square off next against Anthony Pettis. My favorite Aldo moment was the insane double flying knee knockout win over Cub Swanson at WEC 41, just eight seconds in to the first round.
Faber was one of the most exciting fighters on the WEC roster, he had the record for most consecutive title defenses in the WEC (five), he fought six times in 2006 and simultaneously held the KOTC bantamweight and WEC featherweight titles. ‘The California Kid’ has a lethal guillotine choke which scored him submission wins over Jens Pulver, Jeff Curran and Dominick Cruz. My Favorite Faber moment was his five round FOTN performance in his first bout with Jens Pulver in the WEC.
‘Smooth’ is one of my favorite fighters in the UFC and I was a big fan during his stint in the WEC. Henderson won the interim WEC title in his first bout against Donald Cerrone, providing a fight of the night and fight of the year performance. He later went on to unify the belt against Jamie Varner at WEC 46, defending it once before losing to Anthony Pettis in another fight of the night/year winner. My top Bendo moment was his super-tight guillotine choke that he used to submit Donald Cerrone at WEC 48 in the very first round.
‘The Dominator’ compiled a record of 7-1 during his time in the WEC, his only loss coming to Urijah Faber in Cruz’s WEC debut. I’m a big fan of Cruz’s unorthodox style and flashy footwork which he used to beat Ian McCall, Ivan Lopez, Valencia“>Charlie Valencia, Brian Bowles, Joseph Benavidez and Scott Jorgensen while in the WEC. My favorite ‘Dominator’ moment was his first fight against Joseph Benavidez, where the two slugged it out for three rounds to earn fight of the night honors at WEC 42.
‘Cowboy’ may have fallen at every title shot he received in the WEC, but he is still one of my favorite fighters of the time. He had a solid BJJ game and nasty striking abilities, as well as a really cool cowboy hat. As well as the thrilling fight against Ben Henderson, my favorite ‘Cowboy’ moment was his rematch against Jamie Varner at WEC 51 which earned both men fight of the night honors.