This past Saturday at UFC Vegas 35, Daniel Rodriguez (16-2) took on Kevin Lee (18-7) on the main card. It was a massive fight for both men. For Rodriguez, he was looking for his first real signature win in the UFC.
D-Rod has been great since joining the promotion with wins over the likes of Tim Means and Mike Perry. Overall, Rodriguez was 5-1 in the UFC entering Saturday night with the lone loss coming via decision against Nicolas Dalby in a fight many thought he won.
Kevin Lee was fighting just his second fight in the welterweight division. Lee at one point challenged for the interim UFC lightweight title, ultimately falling short to Tony Ferguson. That said, many still look at Lee as an elite mixed martial artist.
The fight started out very well for Lee at UFC Vegas 35. Lee was able to land a takedown in the first round and held his own in the standup. However, the second round is where the fight would drastically change.
Rodriguez would land a massive shot near the end of the round that had Lee out on his feet. D-Rod would use his pressure in the final frame to stifle Lee and ultimately win a unanimous decision.
What’s next after UFC Vegas 35?
The fight was a massive one for Rodriguez as mentioned above. Easily, this is the biggest win of his UFC career. With the win, Rodriguez has a number by his name for the first time in his career with the promotion.
In today’s updated UFC rankings, Rodriguez came in at the 15th spot. Now that he’s a ranked welterweight, what should the promotion do with him next? Well, Rodriguez taking on Sean Brady (14-0) would’ve been a good fight. However, the UFC just booked Brady against Michael Chiesa.
In looking at the division, I like Rodriguez against Santiago Ponzinibbio (28-4). Ponzinibbio ranks just a couple of spots ahead of D-Rod and this would be a sensational fight for fans. If I’m matchmaking, that’s what I’m going with.