Weekend Weigh-Ins, Sherk Out, Penn’s Next Challenger

– All fighters made weight for both WEC and Strikeforce shows tomorrow night. A few fighters had trouble on the first pass but were able to make weight after being given time to shed the extra pounds. Saturday night should be a fun time for MMA fans, as both shows are likely to deliver some great action.

– USA Today says that the mainstream emergence of mixed martial arts is one of the top sports stories of the decade.

– The rumors of Thiago Silva suffering an ankle injury are not true. Silva fights Rashad Evans at UFC 108, a seemingly cursed card that has been heavily impacted by injuries. At last count, there have been nine injuries that either caused the cancellation or shifting of bouts on the show. The latest injury news came last night, as Sean Sherk was forced to pull out of his bout with Jim Miller after suffering a nasty cut on his forehead. Sherk himself was a replacement for Tyson Griffin. Duane “Bang” Ludwig will take Sherk’s spot on the card.

– The latest update on B.J. Penn’s next challenger/victim is this: a Gray Maynard victory over Nate Diaz next month will ensure him the next shot at Penn. If Maynard looks terrible in the fight and squeaks out a boring decision victory, there’s a chance that Edgar could get the nod instead. A source close to the UFC tells me that the shot is basically Maynard’s to lose at this point.

A Maynard loss would put Edgar directly in the driver’s seat unless Nate Diaz looks impressive and finishes Maynard. It’s becoming increasingly clear that Penn’s time in the lightweight division is short, and I expect him to be a full-time welterweight by the time 2010 draws to a close.

– WEC signed a television deal with The Score in Canada to broadcast seven WEC events in 2010.