What’s Next: UFC 270 Winners

Francis Ngannou, UFC 270
Francis Ngannou, UFC 270 Credit: Gabriel Gonzalez/Cageside Press

The first UFC pay-per-view of the year was a success, as was the UFC’s return to California. Francis Ngannou unified the heavyweight title, leaving his future within the promotion up in the air. Deiveson Figueiredo, meanwhile, recaptured his flyweight title in a legendary trilogy. Here is who they should fight next, along with the rest of the UFC 270 main card winners.

Francis Ngannou

To say that Francis Ngannou had the pressure of the world on his shoulders before his fight at UFC 270 might be an understatement. On Saturday, the man was fighting two fights against Ciryl Gane and his employer, the UFC. Oh, and he tore his ACL and MCL before the fight. The future for Ngannou within the UFC is quite frankly up in the air. UFC President Dana White didn’t wrap the heavyweight title around him after his win on Saturday, and that within itself is very telling. White also skipped the post-fight press conference.

If Ngannou signs a new contract and stays with the UFC, he should welcome Jon Jones to the heavyweightg division. That absolutely could be one of the biggest fights in the history of the organization.

Ngannou’s next fight: Jon Jones

Deiveson Figueiredo

Figueiredo’s move to Fight Ready in Arizona paid off on Saturday as he defeated Brandon Moreno in their trilogy. The fight was terrific, and the flyweight pair won Fight of the Night for their efforts. Unfortunately or fortunately, the score is now 1-1-1, and a fourth fight might just be the answer. Actually, yes, that is the answer. Figueiredo vs. Moreno IV in Brazil at UFC 274.

Figueiredo’s next fight: Brandon Moreno

Michel Pereira

After a rocky start to his UFC career, Michel Pereira has now rattled off four straight wins. He also spoiled Andre Fialho’s promotional debut at UFC 270. “Demolidor” was initially supposed to fight Muslim Salikov for a chance at the welterweight top 15 rankings; however, there might be a very good chance Pereira ends up in the rankings on Tuesday anyway. For his next fight, he should be fighting someone in the top 15. Pereira could be rebooked with Salikov, fight Santiago Ponzinibbio or he could jump up and fight No. 10 ranked Michael Chiesa. All three options are very fun match-ups. I lean towards giving him Chiesa.

Pereira’s next fight: Michael Chiesa

Said Nurmagomedov

Said Nurmagomedov picked up his biggest win at UFC 270 when he defeated Cody Stamann in 47 seconds. The Russian has now stopped his last two opponents in under a minute and is very close to a top 15 spot. Nurmagomedov should fight the winner of Jack Shore and Timur Valiev, which goes down at UFC London on March 19. The Russian was supposed to fight Shore last year but pulled out of the fight a few weeks before their scheduled match-up.

Nurmagomedov’s next fight: Jack Shore vs. Timur Valiev winner

Michael Morales

Michael Morales had a very successful UFC debut on Saturday. He finished Trevin Giles in the first round via TKO, spoiling his welterweight debut. At 22-years old, the future is very, very bright for Morales. He is undefeated at 13-0 and has stopped all but two of those opponents. Morales should fight Tim Means for his second UFC fight, who just had to pull out of his fight with Jeremiah Wells due to COVID. Means said he wants to fight in April, which could be an awesome quick turnaround for Morales.

Morales’ next fight: Tim Means