Capped by a finally crowning a new flyweight champion, the UFC’s third offering on Abu Dhabi’s Yas Island, UFC Fight Island 2, delivered plenty of action and more than a few finishes. Deiveson Figueiredo officially begins his reign on top the flyweight division, so today we’ll be looking at what’s next for him and some of the other fighters from UFC Fight Island 2.
While this rematch may or may not have been warranted, it certainly allowed for plenty of flyweight contenders to pile up. Both Brandon Moreno and Alex Perez are on significant win streaks (both are coming off of wins over Jussier Formiga), and Askar Askarov certainly made his candidacy know early in the night. None of those fighters would be a wrong answer, but with two straight finishes and only a loss to Benavidez (that may or may not have also contained a head clash), Alex Perez is the most worthy at the moment.
Deiveson Figueiredo’s next fight: Alex Perez
With 35 career fights and at 35 years old, it wouldn’t really be out of the realm of possibility to see Joe Jitsu walk away. However, if he does plan on staying around, there’s a surprising number of fresh match-ups for him at 125lbs. Coming off a hard fought loss himself, Alexandre Pantoja would be a good test to see which flyweight gets back on the winning side of things.
Joseph Benavidez’s next fight: Alexandre Pantoja
Hermansson made it clear that he wanted the winner of next weekend’s headlining tilt between Robert Whittaker and Darren Till – all of which would be part of a fun tournament he devised in his head. With other top talent having already been booked (Yoel Romero fights Uriah Hall in August, and Costa/Adesanya takes place in September), this does really seem like the only logical spot for Hermansson. Kudos for him for doing his research and setting up a good fight.
Jack Hermansson’s next fight: Till/Whittaker Winner
The matchmaking lately for Gastelum has been nothing short of terrifying. A run that includes Adesanya, Till and Hermansson has Gastelum winless in his last three. Although he doesn’t need to take a big step down, it might be the right move to get his feet back underneath him. Brad Tavares would be a good litmus test to see where he fits into the bigger picture in this division.
Kelvin Gastelum’s next fight: Brad Tavares
With close to fifty career kickboxing bouts under his belt, we probably shouldn’t have been surprised at the offensive and defensive striking on display from Fiziev, but yet most of us were. Another opportunity for him to display that would be good for the growth of his fan base, and honestly for all fans. Let’s pair him with fellow exciting striker Brad Riddell and let the fireworks go off.
Rafael Fiziev’s next fight: Brad Riddell