What’s Next: UFC Fight Island 5 Winners

Marcin Tybura, UFC
Marcin Tybura, UFC Norfolk ceremonial weigh-in Credit: Jay Anderson/Cageside Press

UFC Fight Island 5 marked a historic night in UFC history. Joaquin Buckley had one of the most impressive knockouts in UFC history over undefeated, Impa Kasanganay. Today we are going to talk about what is next for the winners of UFC Fight Island 5.

Cory Sandhagen

Cory Sandhagen landed a beautiful spinning wheel kick that finished Marlon Moraes in the main event this past weekend. This win puts him in a weird position. The only fighter above Sandhagen in the rankings is Aljamain Sterling who rightfully deserves the next title shot. The only thing is, the UFC has yet to book the title fight between Sterling and Petr Yan. Assuming that fight is to be made, Sandhagen would likely be next in line for a title shot.

Sandhagen’s next fight: Winner of Sterling-Yan 

Edson Barboza

Edson Barboza won every round of his fight with Makwan Amirkhani this past weekend. Looking like a brand new fighter at featherweight in the process. His featherweight debut was originally supposed to be against Jeremy Stephens which would have likely done more for his ranking in the division. Although this win over Amirkhani is the perfect set up to a fight between Barboza and Stephens down the road.

Barboza’s next fight: Jeremy Stephens

Marcin Tybura

Marcin Tybura secured a unanimous decision victory over Ben Rothwell at UFC Fight Island 5. Tybura’s win over Rothwell will likely get him a fight inside the top 15 next. Stylistically, Aleksei Oleinik and Sergei Pavlovich look like great candidates to fight Tybura. Oleinik would be a great test to determine just how good Tybura’s grappling is. While Pavlovich would be great to test Tybura’s striking against a world-class striker. Both of these men are available and don’t have a fight booked at the moment. Although it would seem like Tybura’s striking is more in question at this point in his career, Pavlovich seems like the perfect match-up for Tybura in his next bout.

Tybura’s next fight: Sergei Pavlovich 

Dricus du Plessis

Dricus du Plessis landed an impressive knockout in the first round over Markus Perez this past weekend. Plessis showed that he has a lot of potential in the UFC. It is probably out of the question for Plessis to get a top 15 fight unless he gets a short notice fight. There is another middleweight that made an impressive statement a week or so ago however. That would be Dusko Todorovic. Todorovic made a statement last weekend with a vicious TKO over Dequan Townsend. Both Todorovic and Plessis are world-class strikers with great finishing ability.

Dricus du Plessis’ next fight: Dusko Todorovic

Tom Aspinall

Tom Aspinall also made a big name for himself this past weekend. He did that by knocking out Alan Baudot in the first round. This win makes Aspinall 2-0 in the UFC with two beautiful knockouts. If he is looking to make a quick turnaround, a fight with Alexander Romanov would be great for his next bout. Romanov would be Aspinall’s first true test on the ground. The question would be, can Aspinall keep the fight standing? That would seem like a question the UFC would want to answer.

Aspinall’s next fight: Alexander Romanov 

Ilia Topuria

Ilia Topuria won his UFC debut against Youssef Zalal by unanimous decision. Zalal has been on a good run in the UFC so Topuria’s win looks even more impressive. Topuria should be looking to make a quick turnaround while the UFC is still on Fight Island. If he does fight again while they are there, Damon Jackson would be a great next opponent. Jackson is a 23 fight veteran who has 14 wins by submission. Jackson would be a great test for Topuria early in his UFC career.

Topuria’s next fight: Damon Jackson 


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