UFC Vegas 5 turned out to be one of the more snake-bitten cards in recent memory. In addition to a slew of cancellations leading up to and on weigh-in day, the UFC lost a main card bout between Trevin Giles and Kevin Holland. While many fighters lost the opportunity to make strides in their career, several fighters took some big ones.
Brunson has quietly put together a three-fight win streak, all of which was on the backs of fighters looking to make a jump towards the top 5 in the middleweight division. It seems like time for him to make a jump himself, but a lot of the top middleweights are already booked or seemingly will be soon. Next weekend’s middleweight co-main event between Chris Weidman and Omari Akhmedov should supply another top 10 opponent for Brunson. Plus, if it happens to be Weidman, he’ll get yet another big name to put on his resume.
Derek Brunson’s next fight: Weidman/Akhmedov Winner
A lot of people started calling for a title shot for Maia after her dominant performance over Joanne Calderwood (even the champion herself). However, it’s worth noting that she’s coming off of a loss and back-to-back missed weights. As a result, the title shot should probably go to either Cynthia Calvillo or Lauren Murphy who are on more impressive runs. I expect the UFC look to Calvillo, and as a result; we’ll let Maia and Murphy duke it out for the next crack.
Jennifer Maia’s next fight: Lauren Murphy
After losing his six-fight win streak to Stephen “Wonderboy” Thompson, Luque has began to build another impressive run. This time, the UFC would be smart to try to test him a little bit more seriously from the get go. Demian Maia would be a nice step in the right direction. Plus it would give Maia a chance to fight someone who is not one of the top contenders or someone who is unranked (as those have seemed like the only options lately for him). Seeing how the clinch tussles play out between the two would be worth the price of admission.
Vicente Luque’s next fight: Demian Maia
Can we just keep matching Green up in fun fights? I’d honestly take another fight with Lando Vannata as long as they want to keep making those. Now on a two-fight win streak, Green likely wants to take a step up. So let’s pair him with the fun stylings of Renato Moicano. Watching the Thai style of Moicano paired with the boxing of Green would be fun, and we’d probably get some great grappling exchanges too. The winner of that would be a serious threat to the top 15 at lightweight.
Bobby Green’s next fight: Renato Moicano
Emmers took a tough luck split decision in his debut against Giga Chikadze – a fight that a lot of people thought he won. While UFC Vegas 5 was a great showing for Emmers, Vince Cachero took it on very short notice and came up a weight class. To see where Emmers fits a little better, let’s pair him with someone else who just grabbed some momentum at featherweight. Nate Landwehr took a tough loss in his debut as well, but bounced back with a big and exciting win over Darren Elkins. Emmers and Landwehr would be a competitive bout and we’d likely get to see a more complete look at Emmers’ game.
Jamall Emmers’ next fight: Nate Landwehr