Araujo entered UFC 262 on a two-fight win streak and had a lot of people buzzing about her. Chookagian was unphased by a lot of the Araujo hype and she was ready to go out and pick up another good win.
Chookagian fought at UFC 255 when she took on former strawweight Cynthia Calvillo. Calvillo was being built up as a potential title challenger at flyweight, but Chookagian completely shut her down in November.
Araujo started the fight out really strong at UFC 262. Her power was on display in the first round and in the second round she was able to mount Chookagian. The first half of the fight was not going according to plan for Chookagian.
However, Chookagian battled through and weathered the storm. Upon getting back to her feet late in the second round, Chookagian had an exhausted Viviane Araujo standing in front of her.
From that moment, the fight was all Katlyn Chookagian at UFC 262. After the third round, it was clear that Chookagian had made the fight extremely close. To me surprise, all three judges gave her the fight and one judge even gave her every round.
What’s next after UFC 262?
Saturday night was another night where Chookagian proved she’s one of the best flyweights in the UFC. That said, she’s in a bit of a tough spot. Since 2019, Chookagian is 5-2 in the flyweight division.
However, those two losses were to Valentina Shevchenko and Jessica Andrade. Neither fight was close and Chookagian was finished in both of those fights. She’s in a weird limbo stage because I don’t think she beats either of those two in a rematch.
With that, she’s going to have to beat up on the other contenders if she wants another shot at the UFC title. I think the winner of the Lauren Murphy – JoJo Calderwood fight is likely going to get the next title shot.
Neither one of those ladies are an option, but there is a matchup at UFC 264 that could present a fight for Chookagian. Former title challenger Jessica Eye (15-9, 1 NC) and Jennifer Maia (18-7-1) are fighting each other in July.
Chookagian has fought both before having lost to Eye and defeating Jennifer Maia. I think a rematch with either of those ladies is warranted at this stage. A rematch with whoever wins could very well be the direction the UFC chooses to go in after Saturday night.