UFC 249 has had major victories that could change some fighters’ careers. We saw a young talent emerge over a veteran in the game. We witnessed a knockout that will remain an historical highlight forever. The co-main event was the culminating point of one of the greatest fighters ever. The UFC introduced the G.O.A.T into the UFC Hall of Fame. The main bout will define the legacy of each fighter. The real question is, what is the next step for all of them?
Greg Hardy: a fight with Cyril Gane (15)
With six fights in the UFC, we still have not seen what Greg Hardy is truly made of. He’s capable of delivering a big punch to put people to sleep and has a 3-2-1 record in the UFC. Apart from Alexander Volkov, Hardy has never faced any real experienced fighters. It’s time for him to show what is inside him. On the other hand, Cyril Gane is a savage on the feet. He has never lost in the octagon, which is reflected by his perfect record of 6-0. The winner of this bout could crack the top 15 of the heavyweight division.
Calvin Kattar (9): a fight against Yair Rodriguez (5)
Kattar delivered a great performance and demonstrated what an elite fighter he is. He demolished a veteran of the game and bought himself a ticket to face off against a top 5 in his division. In his last fight, Yair Rodriguez won a unanimous decision against Jeremy Stephens. He is an elite and spectacular fighter at both ends of the fighting game. This bout could be a Fight of the Night caliber fight.
Francis Ngannou (2) : a title shot near September
Ngannou is in a weird situation. He crushed Rozenstruick in a mere 22 seconds with a big hook. However, the future is uncertain for Francis. He clearly deserves a title shot against the champ, but Stipe Miocic is a firefighter in his hometown,and the city needs him during this pandemic. He told Ariel Helwani a few days ago that he was going to fight Daniel Cormier in September and that he would not leave his job to fight under any condition. Cormier vs Miocic 3 makes sense but needs to happen soon. Ngannou is not going to wait until September to fight. He wants it in July. But DC vs Miocic 3 will likely happen before Francis gets a shot. Poor Francis…
Henry Cejudo (C ) : a salary increase and a fight at 135 against Jose Aldo
First of all, I do not believe in the retirement of Triple C. I think it was a business move to get a better contract that is deserving of a double champion. Cejudo saved the flyweight division and the Triple C gimmick works and has a ton of value for the UFC. I think they will offer him a contract that he cannot refuse. He would then fight at 135 Jose Aldo. Before the COVID-19 pandemic, he had to fight Aldo in Brazil. I think the UFC is still looking for this fight.
Justin Gaethje ( IC): a unification against Khabib Nurmagomedov (C )
Do I really need to explain this one? Justin fought the fight of his life and defeated Tony Ferguson to capture the Interim 155 belt. By the end of Ramadan, Khabib will be ready to go if he can enter the United States border. This fight should take place in July on Fight Island. I cannot wait for this one …