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UFC Fight Night 57 fight card: Frankie Edgar vs Cub Swanson fight preview

Top 10-ranked featherweights Frankie Edgar and Cub Swanson will look to earn a title shot with a victory later tonight (Nov. 22, 2014) at UFC Fight Night 57 inside the Frank Erwin Center in Austin, Texas. Between two excellent strikers, what adjustments must be made for either man in order to claim victory? Find out how below!

Photo by Esther Lin for

Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) featherweights Frankie Edgar and Cub Swanson are set to do battle later tonight (Nov. 22, 2014) at UFC Fight Night 57 inside Frank Erwin Center in Austin, Texas.

Despite being ranked among the featherweight elite, Edgar has yet to score a win over a top 10 fighter in his new division. He'll look to change this with a victory against Swanson, which will undoubtedly put him closer to a rematch with Jose Aldo.

Meanwhile, Swanson has been on a hell of a tear. Winner of his last six fights, "Killer Cub" will certainly be deserving of a title shot if he manages to defeat the former lightweight kingpin.

Let's take a look at the keys to victory for each man.

Frankie Edgar
Record: 17-4-1
Key Wins: BJ Penn (TUF 19 Finale, UFC 118, UFC 112), Gray Maynard (UFC 136), Charles Oliveira (UFC 162)
Key Losses: Jose Aldo (UFC 156), Ben Henderson (UFC 144, UFC 150)
Keys to Victory: As usual, successfully transitioning between striking and wrestling is the key for Frankie Edgar. The collegiate wrestler combines his excellent takedowns with a strong boxing game, which has resulted in five knockout victories.

In addition, constant movement and feinting is definitely the New Jersey-native's forte. Keeping up with Edgar's movements is exhausting, as "The Answer" can endlessly maintain his style of fighting.

Which is particularly useful in five round fights.

For this bout, Edgar should look to use his wrestling early and often. By landing takedowns on Swanson early, he gets himself ahead on the judges scorecards, can land easy damage from the top position, and begins the process of exhausting Swanson from the very beginning of the fight.

Furthermore, it will help Edgar with his boxing. Since Swanson will know just how real the threat of the takedown is after being forced to work back to his feet, he'll be more likely to bite on Edgar's many feinted takedowns and swallow a punch instead.

Finally, Swanson rarely checks his opponent's leg kicks. Edgar has found great success in the past landing leg kicks on his opponents as they turn to face him, and Swanson is an excellent opponent to use that technique on. Plus, it could result in easy top position if Edgar sweeps his opponent off of his feet with a low kick.

Cub Swanson
Record: 21-5
Key Wins: Jeremy Stephens (UFC Fight Night 42), Dustin Poirier (UFC on Fuel TV 7), Dennis Siver (UFC 162)
Key Losses: Jose Aldo (WEC 41), Ricardo Lamas (UFC on FOX 1), Chad Mendes (WEC 50)
Keys to Victory: Swanson is one of the most dynamic finishers in the sport. A talented kickboxer, Swanson's work with professional boxer Timothy Bradley has clearly paid dividends, as Swanson's unorthodox style has gotten much smoother over the last couple years.

Above all else, Swanson relies on being unpredictable with his attack. By leaping in-and-out of range with powerful strikes, hurling spinning attacks at his opponent, and generally being a whirlwind of offense, Swanson has managed to score eight knockout victories.

In this bout, Swanson needs to be looking for damage for every second the bout is on the feet. Swanson may not be able to fully knock out Edgar -- it's still questionable whether that's actually possible -- but he can definitely accumulate major damage and prevent "Iron" from getting into his rhythm and game plan.

Swanson will almost certainly end up on his back at some point in this fight, likely multiple times. When that happens, Swanson's focus needs to be focused on returning to his feet.

That's not to say Swanson's shouldn't attempt submissions. However, Swanson shouldn't be looking to finish his omoplata or guillotine, but their main purpose should be getting Swanson back to his feet. If Swanson spends half the fight trying to submit Edgar -- a man that has never been finished by punches or tapout -- he's more likely to end up on the wrong side of a decision loss than a victory.

Bottom Line: In current featherweight division, nothing is certain. If either of these fighters would like to earn a title shot off of their performances tonight, it needs to be a truly dominant victory.

In all honesty, there's very little chance Edgar gets a title shot after this fight. His last bout with Aldo was simply too recent, and Edgar's wins since then haven't been particularly notable. However, a victory over Swanson would definitely put him within a fight of a title shot.

A loss would likely send Edgar to the bottom of the ladder. If he's dominantly beaten or finished, questions of regression would definitely arise as well.

On the other hand, Swanson has a decent chance of earning his spot as a title challenger. Though a certain Irishman makes all of this quite unpredictable, Swanson would be on a truly great win streak with a number of quality finishes.

Swanson has been building up this win streak for some time. If he falls to Edgar, it would likely be very difficult for "Killer Cub" to build up this much momentum, as he's fairly deep into his professional career already.

At UFC Fight Night 57, either Frankie Edgar and Cub Swanson will continue their quest to rematch Jose Aldo. Which man will potentially earn another shot at the featherweight king?

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