In yet another back and forth slugfest, Robbie Lawler pulled out a close split decision over Carlos Condit to remain the Welterweight Champion of the world. Lawler landed precise and powerful blows throughout the five round scrap, but many feel Condit’s high volume of strikes was enough to secure him the gold. One thing that is indisputable is that UFC 195 was a great night of fights. From the instant classic title defense to the Lightweight bloody brawl between Poirier and Duffy you couldn’t have asked for much more for your $69.99 PPV buy. Now we look forward to which fights make sense for the winners and losers of Saturday nights mayhem.
Robbie Lawler vs Carlos Condit
Robbie Lawler (27-10): In another amazing display of heart, grit, and overall badassness; Lawler turned it on late to defend his Welterweight strap. An immediate rematch with Condit would make sense but with Tyron Woodley and Rory MacDonald not having opponents scheduled, a March number one contender (Preferably a five round main event) rematch would make a lot of fight fans very happy. That is if Rory has recovered from his war in July with Lawler.
Carlos Condit (30-9): Condit came up a few combinations short of becoming the 9th man to wear Welterweight gold. His performance definitely won’t hurt his rankings in the division and his next opponent should be of the top 5 caliber. A fight that make sense would be the winner of the February 6th match up of Johnny Hendricks vs Stephen “Wonderboy” Thompson. A 5 round matchup with either of these contenders would be worth the price of admission.
Stipe Miocic vs Andrei Arlovski
Stipe Miocic (14-2): It was a short night of work for Miocic dispatching of the “Pitbull” in 54 seconds of the first round. Following the KO Miocic demanded a title shot screaming “I want my shot” and “are we on the same page now?” to a ring side Dana White. White responded at the post fight press conference by granting Stipe the winner of Werdum vs Velasquez 2 saying “who the hell is going to say no to that guy?”. A title fight for Miocic isn’t unwarranted, however a number one contender fight with Alistair Overeem would cement the winners place as next in line.
Andrei Arlovski (25-11): Unfortunately for Arlovski his questionable chin wasn’t able to hold up to Miocic’s power. Arlovski’s kill or be killed mentality will keep him relevant in a shallow Heavyweight division and assure him top of the card match ups. A fight with “Super Samoan” Mark Hunt would be a surefire crowd pleaser as well as having important ranking implications.
Lorenz Larkin vs Albert Tumenov
Lorenz Larkin (16-5): “The Monsoon” was on the wrong side of a blown decision Saturday night taking a loss despite battering Tumenov thoroughly all 3 rounds. Tumenov needed assistance leaving the cage after Larkin destroyed his lead leg with vicious leg kicks. Leaving it in the hands of the judges is always risky and this fight showed why so many MMA fans hold their breath when it goes to the cards. Larkin should be given a quality opponent after putting on a solid striking performance. A bounce back bout with Jordan “Young Gun” Mein would be a good showcase for Larkin’s first-rate stand up.
Albert Tumenov (17-2): Tumenov’s gifted split decision is his 5th straight win inside the octagon. Tumenov did display some excellent boxing, working the body of Larkin with heavy blows and knocking his braces off in the 2nd round. The 24 year old should get a serious test in his next bout, Erik Silva could prove to be that test. The Brazilian’s unorthodox striking would be an intriguing match up against Tumenov’s tight boxing.
Brian Ortega vs Diego Brandao
Brian Ortega (10-0): Ortega showed why his blue-chip prospect title is well deserved. After enduring two rounds of hard shots from Brandao,”T-City” converted a standing anaconda choke into a takedown where he transitioned into a top-side guillotine before finally transitioning into a fight ending triangle. Ortega’s ability to chain together slick submissions is a thing of beauty and will be a terrifying challenge for anyone in the UFC’s Featherweight division. Remaining unbeaten at (10-0) we should see Ortega’s competition stiffen, a fight with perennial contender Dennis “The Menace” Bermudez would be the perfect match up.
Diego Brandao(20-11): Brandao’s recent resurgence came to an end despite dominating the first two rounds. “DB” appeared to lose steam in the 3rd before getting caught in a beautiful triangle choke by Ortega. Brandao will continue to be a strong gate keeper in the Featherweight division separating the contenders from the pretenders. A fight with Team Alpha Male’s Andre “Touchy” Filli would be a good measuring stick for both fighters.
Dustin Poirier vs Joseph Duffy
Dustin Poirier (19-4): Poirier further confirmed that his move up to 155 was the right decision. Poirier looked excellent in standing exchanges, landed takedowns at will and showed great control on the mat. Poirier cashed in on this huge opportunity and showed that he belongs in the top-tier of the Lightweight division. Poirer will certainly get a top 10 opponent, if not top 5, next. A match up with Nate Diaz would have the makings of an instant classic, that is if Diaz hasn’t talked his way into winning the Connor McGregor lottery.
Joseph Duffy (14-2): Despite taking the loss, Duffy displayed some of the skills that had everyone talking pre-fight. He badly broke Poireir’s nose with some crisp boxing combos but was unable to compete when it went down to the mat. A comeback fight against Jorge Masvidal in Ireland would get people talking.