This past Saturday in the main event of UFC Vegas 79, we saw a battle between two of the best lightweight contenders in the world. Top ranked contenders Rafael Fiziev (12-3) and Mateusz Gamrot (23-2) went head-to-head as both men were looking to take a step towards lightweight title contention.
Entering the bout, the story was all about where the fight would take place. Would Fiziev being able to stop the takedowns of Gamrot and turn this into a striking bout? Would Gamrot be able to take Fiziev down and impose his will on the ground?
In the first round, Fiziev showed unbelievable balance and takedown defense. It looked like Gamrot was really going to have a tough time during the fight because he wasn’t able to get the fight down. That said, Gamrot did hold his own on the feet and landed some nice right hands.
In the second round, both men were striking and again, Fiziev was getting the better of things. Then, just at about the two minute mark of the round, Fiziev threw a kick and went down in pain. Appears that he tore something in his knee and the fight was called off giving Gamrot the TKO win at UFC Vegas 79.
What’s next after UFC Vegas 79?
While it wasn’t the way he wanted it to happen, Gamrot still got the W on Saturday night. With this latest win, what should be next for him given the state of the lightweight division. Well, it’s a very interesting spot given the contenders that are ranked all around him.
If you’re looking at the rankings, Michael Chandler would be a great next choice. However, Chandler is expecting the UFC to book him against Conor McGregor. That said, the fight doesn’t appear close to being booked at this time. If that fight never materializes, Chandler – Gamrot is an excellent fight.
One option could be the loser of the upcoming title fight. Islam Makhachev and Charles Oliveira battle next month for the title and Justin Gaethje is waiting in the wings to fight the winner. Whoever loses the title fight could be a great opponent for Gamrot so he can enter the title picture.
A good name for Gamrot could be Dan Hooker. Granted, Hooker is a step back in terms of ranking, but the name recognition could be enough for him to take the fight.