UFC folds World Extreme Cagefighting, will add two divisions
Ultimate Fighting Championship President Dana White announced Thursday morning that his parent company, Zuffa, has folded the World Extreme Cagefighting organization, blending its fighters into the UFC and adding two new weight divisions.
The 145-pound featherweight division -- headed by a champion in Jose Aldo who White says is one of the "top three" pound-for-pound UFC fighters -- and 135-pound bantamweight division will begin placing fights in the UFC at its Jan. 1 event in Las Vegas, White said.
Dominick Cruz will be the 135-pound champion if he wins his Dec. 16 final WEC fight against Scott Jorgensen in Glendale, Ariz., White said.
WEC lightweight champion Ben Henderson will get a title shot at the Jan. 1 winner of champion Frankie Edgar versus Gray Maynard, should Henderson defeat Anthony Pettis in Glendale.
"We've always wanted to do this, adding more weight divisions to the UFC," White said.
The UFC also announced it would place four cards featuring fights in all UFC weight divisions on the cable network Versus in 2011. Versus previously televised WEC fights.
White said that by consolidating the fight organizations under the UFC banner he expects higher ratings and greater pay-per-view numbers with more compelling consequences by division. He also said he "assumed" the 75 or so WEC fighters would receive bigger paydays. White said the UFC stable of fighters is now in the 300 range.
The Times previously did not cover WEC events.
-- Lance Pugmire
Photo: U.S. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) (L) and UFC president Dana White walk to a polling site on October 19 in Las Vegas. Credit: Ethan Miller / Getty Images.