Four UFC 109 Must-Wins

Randy Couture and Mark Coleman’s jobs and legacies are secure, but the UFC Hall of Famers are the only guys fighting at UFC 109 who have little to lose and nothing to prove. There are four guys fighting on Sat. who desperately need a win to stay relevant in their respective divisions and maybe keep pulling a paycheck from Zuffa.

Frank Trigg

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(Things didn’t go well in Frank Trigg’s UFC comeback fight.)

An accomplished veteran on the independent circuit, Trigg went 2-3 in his first UFC go-around. Given a second chance he was floored by a Josh Koscheck right hand at 1:25 of the first round at UFC 103. Eight weeks before the fight Trigg had considered withdrawing from the bout due to knee problems, and afterwards doctors diagnosed the pain as arthritis-related, cleaned out debris from the knee and drilled holes in his bone to encourage the production of collagen.

Entering his showdown with Matt Serra, Trigg is healthy, in shape and learning new tricks under Mark Laimon at Cobra Kai Jiu Jitsu Academy. “For sure it’s [a must-win],” Trigg told Fightmagazine.com. “If I lose two in a row there’s no reason for the UFC to keep me. Serra’s in that same position. You have to start thinking about what’s going to happen.”

Matt Serra

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(Courtesy of Zuffa, LLC)

As good a character as “The Terror” is, Matt Serra’s only fought twice in 34 months and lost both times. He’s stretched the goodwill garnered from a star turn on The Ultimate Fighter Season 4 and his unlikely knockout of GSP about as far as he can. Serra, 35, has flirted with the idea of retirement before and may again if he loses on Saturday.

Mac Danzig

A win over Tommy Speer at the December 2007 finale of The Ultimate Fighter Season 6 punched Danzig’s UFC ticket and he validated it with a submission win over Mark Bocek in his main card debut the following April. Then a tough loss to Clay Guida at UFC Fight Night 15 sent Danzig into a downward spiral as he dropped consecutive fights to Josh Neer and Jim Miller. The one-time PRIDE fighter and former King of the Cage champion was once a highly touted prospect – now the outspoken vegan is looking like dead meat if he doesn’t pull out a win against Justin Buchholz.

Phillipe Nover

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(Courtesy of Zuffa, LLC)

The “Filipino Assassin” was Dana White’s favorite during TUF Season 8. He made a strong run to the finals where he lost to Efrain Escudero, but “Fainting Phillipe” – the nickname White hung on Nover when he passed out during the first day of taping – put a fright into UFC officials when he blacked out before a scheduled bout with Sam Stout at Ultimate Fight Night 19. A previous loss to Kyle Bradley has Nover standing at 0-2 to start his UFC career befor
“I changed a few things and I feel like I’ve gotten to much better,” Nover said. “After taking a few losses you have to sort of step back and figure out what went wrong and make yourself better. I decided that I’m going to have fun in 2010 and the years to follow. I’m fighting because I love to fight not because I have to fight.”

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