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Is Welterweight the UFC's Toughest Division?

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Jay Hieron (23-6) looks at the UFC's welterweight division and knows he has work to do if he ever wants to be champion. Before even thinking about a championship shot, Hieron has to worry about Erick Silva (14-3-1 NC).

"I think this is one of the toughest divisions in the UFC," said Hieron to TATAME. "You have no easy fights in this category and I know that facing Silva will not be easy."

The upcoming fight will be Hieron's third for the UFC. He has lost his previous two. The first was at UFC 48 against current champion Georges St-Pierre (23-2) and the other occurred in October to Jake Ellenberger (28-6). Before coming to the UFC, Hieron was the final IFL welterweight champion and found minor success in Bellator before losing in the tournament final.

The next challenge for the UFC welterweight championship is unclear. Dana White announced Johny Hendricks (14-1) has the No. 1 contender, but he isn't alone. Nick Diaz (26-8-1 NC) is looking for a championship shot when he returns from his suspension in early 2013 and middleweight champion Anderson Silva (33-4) continues to seek out a superfight.

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Hieron vs. Silva will take place February 2 from Brazil at UFC 156.

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