By Benjamin Bieker
Rashad Evans vs. Glover Teixeira
Teixeira is stuck in a weird place, because he is a nice challenge for Jon Jones but is stuck behind Lyoto Machida and Alexander Gustafsson in terms of order. Teixeira cannot continue to face off with fighters like James Te-Huna and Fabio Maldonado since he has proven himself with a win over Quinton Jackson. He is currently ranked at number 4 which is likely to change after Henderson’s loss. The only matchups for him are Ryan Bader and Evans, but it would be smarter to line him up with Evans since at this point Teixeira seems to be ranked a lot higher than Bader.
Dan Henderson vs. winner of Chael Sonnen vs. Mauricio Rua
Dan Henderson is still a tough fighter, but people are going to start questioning whether he can compete at the highest level with his recent losses. His last great fight was against Rua, and it may be time to try to repeat that with a rematch. If Rua cannot get past Sonnen it would also be a fun fight to have the former training partners face off as well. Either of them seem like the next step for Henderson, if he continues to fight.
Stipe Miocic vs. Antonio Silva
Miocic came through big with his win over Nelson, and he now enters the top ten of the heavyweight division. Now being in the top ten, he should not be fighting anyone outside of it. While Silva is coming off a loss, he is the last fighter to fight for the title, and the grudge match with Thiago Silva is just a pipe dream. Have these two face off to see if Miocic can take a jump into the top five of the division.
Roy Nelson vs. Mark Hunt
Who does not want to see this fight? Hunt is a rotund fighter with knockout power and so is Nelson. All that is standing in the way is the contract negotiations of Nelson and the staph infection of Hunt. As soon as all of that is behind them, the two could face off in a fight for the fans and redemption.
Alexis Davis vs. Winner of Liz Carmouche vs. Jessica Andrade
Davis says she is the one that will beat Ronda Rousey, but she did not prove it in her fight against Sexton. Davis fought a smaller fighter with decent grappling, but she could not submit her and became very tired. She will need another win or two until she earns a title shot, and some of this fights lackluster viewing can be attributed to her debut. Andrade and Carmouche are both tough fighters who can compete on the ground and standing, and that is the challenge that Davis will need to prove to herself.
Shawn Jordan vs. Winner of Matt Mitrione vs. Brendan Schaub
Shawn Jordan continues to impress after his lackluster bout against Cheick Kongo. He needs to fighter a better level of fighter since most fighters he has fought are not even in the top twenty level of heavyweights except for the loss to Kongo. With a win in their bout Mitrione and Schaub will be on a two fight win streak just like Jordan. All of three of these fighters seem to be at the same level, because they are right outside the top ten. With a couple wins though they will find themselves right in the thick of the title hunt.
What are your thoughts?