With UFC 207 coming to an end, so does the year of fights in 2016. With all of the highs and the lows of the event that has had everyone talking, lets play matchmaker for the winners of UFC 207 and see what match ups are possible in the near future.
Amanda Nunes – Winner of Juliana Pena vs Valentina Shevchenko
Before Nunes was set to defend her belt against Ronda Rousey, a number 1 contender bout was already booked between Pena and Shevchenko. These two can both make a case for being next against the champ. Pena has a perfect 4-0 record since winning her season of the ultimate fighter and joining the UFC. Pre UFC 207, she has been very vocal that she feels she should have been the one getting her shot at the title rather than Rousey. Shevchenko is a familiar opponent for Nunes, who beat her in a very close decision back at UFC 196 cementing her shot for the title against Miesha Tate. It would be very interesting to see a rematch between Nunes and Shevchenko in a bout that is 5 rounds rather then 3. In their first fight Shevchenko dropped the first two rounds but punished the current champion in the third frame, but ran out of time. It was evident Nunes ran out out of gas after the second round.
Cody Garbrandt- TJ Dillashaw
Garbrandt put on an amazing performance that made him a star overnight, dethroning the bantamweight king Dominick Cruz via decision. The bout before Garbrandt’s title fight was a match between TJ Dillashaw and John Lineker, in which Dillashaw looked phenomenal and dominated Lineker for most of 3 rounds. With Dillashaw’s loss to Cruz for his belt being as close as it was, winning his next two bouts against the highest ranked contenders possible Dillashaw has secured himself as the first defense for Garbrandt. It also doesn’t hurt that both fighters have made it known that there is tension between the two after Dillashaw’s departure from Garbrandt’s camp Team Alpha Male.
Dong Hyun Kim- Neil Magny
Kim was able to win a very close decision against Tarec Saffiedine, in a bout that many people felt that he had lost. Although this fight didn’t hurt his ranking in the welterweight division, I don’t believe it made a strong case for Kim to get a top 5 opponent in his next outing. A perfect opponent for him would be against another winner on this card, Neil Magny. Magny defeated Johny Hendricks at UFC 207 by a very narrow decision, likewise to Kim. They also were set to fight each other at UFC 202 until Kim had to pull out due to injury, so it would make a ton of sense for the two welterweights to finally clash.
Ray Borg- Dustin Ortiz
Although Borg missed weight, he looked phenomenal against a very game fighter in Louis Smolka. If Borg is able to keep his weight under control, he can be a very nice addition to the flyweight division especially at the young age only 23 years old. Dustin Ortiz would be a very good matchup for Borg and it would really show where Borg stands in this division.
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