Originally posted on FOX Sports  |  Last updated 1/30/13
For New Jersey's Frankie Edgar, the time is now. 2010 was the "Year of B.J. Penn" 2011 was the "Year of Gray Maynard" 2012 was the "Year of Benson Henderson" And now in 2013 it's the "Year of Jose Aldo." (Or at least the start of it.) Based on his prior fights, "The Answer" could just as easily be named "The Sequel". Each of the past three years of his career has been marked by two bouts against the same opponent. Yet on Saturday at UFC 156 at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas, Edgar will be looking for a definitive win that will lay to rest any cries for a rematch. Edgar's upcoming bout against UFC featherweight champ Jose Aldo marks a new chapter in his UFC career. After significant prodding from UFC president Dana White, Edgar has made the drop to featherweight, a mass that is much more natural to his frame. "I don't think people realize that when I first started fighting, 145 wasn't even a weight class in the UFC," said Edgar to FOXSports.com. "I fought (at) 155 because that was the lightest weight class to fight in." Despite that lack of options, Edgar found plenty of success at 155 as a two-time UFC lightweight champion. Meanwhile, Jose Aldo has been the champion of the 145-pound featherweight division ever since it was added to the UFC during the WEC merger in 2010. Aldo has defended his title successfully three times in the UFC and Edgar is aware of the danger Aldo poses. "Everyone know Jose has phenomenal leg kicks ... he's fast and very explosive." But Edgar, comparatively speaking, is a bigger threat than ever. By dropping down a division, and competing with fighters that must be able to cut to 145, Edgar is in essence a fighter reborn. Edgar, who walks around at 158 pounds on a day-to-day basis, will have an easier cut than the majority of his competitors in the featherweight division, giving him an advantage that may pay dividends in the Octagon. "I'll probably be able to use my wrestling a little better," said Edgar. "I'll be able to use my size a little more. I don't know if I'm gonna be the biggest 145 pounder but I'm going to be not so much outsized as at 155." Yet with all of these changes comes greater expectations. Edgar is at a major turning point in his fight career and there are two streaks that are very important. First, Edgar dropped two straight (albeit controversial) fights to UFC lightweight champion Benson Henderson in 2012. A loss to Aldo on Saturday night would be his third in a row, a devastating stat for any fighter in the UFC. Second, Saturday night will be Edgar's seventh straight title fight. It's also Edgar's sixth consecutive appearance at the top of a UFC pay-per-view, a feat only two current UFC champs can claim (Silva & St-Pierre). In short, Edgar has gotten used to fighting in the brightest of spotlights. Should he lose, it can't be underestimated how a change might affect his psyche. Fortunately, despite his ups and downs, Edgar's head seems to be in the right place. "The way my last couple of fights went, going to the scorecards, I would love to not give the judges an option to decide it. If it goes to the scorecard, I just want to make sure it's dominating and that I'm not going to be wondering when they're reading it."
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