No. 4-ranked UFC featherweight contender Cub Swanson has long been a top-10 perennial contender, but a coveted UFC title shot has always eluded him.
He is slated to take on Brian Ortega in the main event of UFC Fight Fight Night Fresno. Going into this fight, feels it could be due to the path the UFC has put him on.
“Fighters like that, they get hand-picked opponents their entire career,” Swanson told Yahoo! Sports. “Guys like me, they’re like, ‘Yeah, he’s winning, but let’s give him tougher and tougher and tougher and tougher guys.’
That’s literally how they book my fights. It’s a lot harder for somebody like me to have an undefeated career than somebody like a Conor or a Ronda.”
UFC Fresno (UFC Fight Night 123) is set to take place on Saturday, December 9, 2017 at Save Mart Center in Fresno, California. The event will mark the promotion's first visit to Fresno.
The main card will air on FOX Sports 1 at 10 p.m. ET while the preliminary card will be split broadcasted on FOX Sports 1 at 8 p.m. ET and the promotion’s streaming service, UFC Fight Pass, at 6:30 p.m. ET.
Swanson, however, feels as if both UFC lightweight champion Conor McGregor and former UFC women's bantamweight champion Rousey were ‘pampered’ by the UFC:
“That’s very fair, but I also think both of them were very pampered,” he said. “You know I’ll take slack for saying that, but it’s very true. I tell young fighters this all the time. Me and Ortega both, we’re just another fighter from California.
We’re not from a country that doesn’t have any other fighters and so we don’t have an entire country backing us up. So we’re not an easy sell from a promoter’s perspective.”
He also claimed that the two stars have been ‘compensated above and behind’:
“One, they’re being compensated above and beyond,” he said. “Two, their opponents were picked at the right time and it was the right person. When [McGregor fought] Chad Mendes, that fight, [Mendes] wasn’t even training when Aldo pulled out.
Five other people were training and they went with the guy who is the least in shape. Same thing happened with Nate Diaz. Five other people signed on the dotted line and Nate Diaz got the fight because he was the least in shape. There was too much money to be lost. It’s simple.”