Israel Adesanya and Alexander Volkanovski retained their respective titles at UFC 276. Adesanya won a decision over Jared Cannonier and Volkanovski did the same while closing out his trilogy against Max Holloway. Today we will be looking at what is next for the losers of UFC 276.
Cannonier only has two losses in the middleweight division and those two losses are against Adesanya and Robert Whittaker. He has run through the division other than those two losses and should still be fighting someone in the top five in his next fight.
Sean Strickland was ranked number four in the division before being knocked out by Alex Pereira at UFC 276. Strickland was also on a tear leading into this most recent loss and should be looking to fight a big name like Cannonier in his next fight. Both Cannonier and Strickland love to stand and strike and that fight could easily headline a fight night in the near future.
Cannonier’s next fight: Sean Strickland
Max Holloway showed that he still has a lot left in the tank at UFC 276. Volkanovski just seems to be on another level and has even talked about moving up in weight for his next fight. If that happens, Holloway will without a doubt be fighting for the interim belt in his next fight. The question becomes, who is going to challenge Holloway for the interim title?
On July 16th, number two ranked, Brian Ortega will be taking on number three ranked, Yair Rodriguez. Whoever wins that fight likely buys their ticket to fight for the interim title while Volkanovski challenges for the lightweight title.
Holloway’s next fight: Winner of Rodriguez-Ortega
As mentioned, a fight with Cannonier make a whole lot of sense right now.
Robbie Lawler and Bryan Barberena put on a show this past weekend. The two fighters went to war for almost two rounds before Lawler was finished on his feet in the second round. Lawler seems to have no plans to retire anytime soon but he certainly needs to turn this ship around. He is 1-5 in his last six fights with his only win being against Nick Diaz. If he does get another shot in the UFC, he needs to fight a veteran again.
Court McGee would be the first name that comes to mind. McGee has been in the UFC for 12 years and somehow has not fought Robbie Lawler in that time. In his last six fights, McGee is 2-4 which includes his loss to Geoff Neal in June.
Lawler’s next fight: Cort McGee
Pedro Munhoz vs. Sean O’Malley
The bantamweight fight between Pedro Munhoz and Sean O’Malley was cut short at UFC 276. The fight ended in a no contest due to an accidental eye poke by O’Malley. As long as Munhoz isn’t seriously injured, it seems like the only real option would be to have a quick turnaround rematch with O’Malley. O’Malley seemed to be winning the fight up until the foul and should be looking to correct that mark on his record.