UFC 152 Post-Fight Matchmaking
UFC 152 was an ever-pleasing mix of favorites and underdogs claiming victories in their respective bouts and even those who were supposed to run through their opponents had to work hard for their victory, dig deep and really find what it was meant for them to be a fighter. With the dust from the weekend starting to settle, let’s see where our victors and more notable losers will wind up in the coming months.
Jon Bones showed us again why he is the man with the belt as he persevered through a dangerous armbar early in the fight to find his rhythm and put Vitor through the works. With Dan Henderson tentatively slated to fight Lyoto Machida later this year and a potential injury to Jones’s arm that could leave him out of action for a few weeks or months (yet to be determined), it is most likely that we will see the winner of this bout take on the champion at a mid-2013 event.
Jones will fight the winner of Dan Henderson vs Lyoto Machida
Jones’ brilliance and unpredictability as allowed him, similarly to Anderson Silva, create such doubt in the mind of his opponent that in some ways, he’s already won before he even walks out to the cage. Despite looking largely outmatched on Saturday, Vitor also offered moments of aggressiveness that made Jones look almost human. Many of his contemporaries are finding themselves at the end of their careers and moving on to different chapters in their lives. Vitor has proven over the last couple years that he is still very capable of pulling the trigger and inflicting massive damage. On top of the fact that his foray into the light heavyweight division was solely for a title shot and came about as a courtesy to the UFC, I don’t think he will lose much ground in the middleweight division.
Belfort will fight Brian Stann
As predicted by this writer, Mighty Mouse’s extraordinary work rate would win him the inaugural flyweight title. Predicting his next opponent should be interesting, in that the flyweight division is currently quite shallow, consisting of only 14 fighters. Still, that should be enough to create genuine challengers. The next notable flyweight fight comes on October 5 between TUF 14 bantamweight winner, John Dodson, and Jussier da Silva. Both of these fighters are extremely talented and may present the first flyweight number one contender.
Johnson will fight the winner of John Dodson vs Jussier da Silva
As one of the top flyweights in the world coming off a loss to the now champion, Demetrious Johnson, it would probably make the most sense to see him fight another flyweight considered in the top five. Ian McCall also lost a closely contested fight to Demetrious Johnson and likely make the most sense for Benevidez’s next opponent.
Benevidez will fight Ian McCall
Bisping’s complete game is the story of his victory over Brian Stann. He was better in the standup, he dominated on the ground and at the end of three rounds it looked like going two more would have been just another day in the gym. I think it’s fair to say Bisping has earned a step up in competition. There are two big middleweight fights happening at UFC 155 and it’s likely Bisping will claim the winner of one of them…
Bisping will fight the winner of Chris Weidman vs Tim Boetch
Hamill’s return on Saturday wasn’t pretty, but given that he is coming off of a long hiatus and a two-fight losing streak, a win is a win. Hamill will obviously need some time to get back into fighting. It would also seem that Vinny Magalhaes was having a hard time getting back into the swing of things in his octagon return. I’d like to see these two match up in the future after their respective Saturday night wins.
Matt Hamill will fight Vinny Magalhaes
Since losing his title to Jose Aldo, Cub Swanson has looked mediocre but in 2012 he has been storming his way back into contention. After brutally taking out a top featherweight prospect, he is one of very few featherweights not named Jose Aldo to hold a three-fight winning streak. With injury drama that has resulted in an unclear number one contender status between Eric Koch and Frankie Edgar, one other featherweight stands above the rest as a contender… the Korean Zombie, Chan-Sung Jung. Although his fight with Dustin Poirier was to determine who is next in line, we all know that this is little more a token offer and until your name is on the poster and the UFC Countdown production team are knocking at your door, it really doesn’t mean a whole heck of a lot.
Swanson fights Chan-Sung Jung