This past Saturday night in the headliner of UFC Vegas 71 we saw a massive fight in the heavyweight division with potential title implications. Top four contenders battled it out as Curtis Blaydes (17-4, 1 NC) took on Sergei Pavlovich (18-1).
After losing his UFC debut, Pavlovich has been on a roll winning five straight by first round stoppage. Meanwhile, Blaydes has been arguably the best heavyweight in the division over the past several years who hasn’t earned a title shot.
Both Pavlovich and Blaydes were looking to earn a title shot on Saturday. Blaydes has the most takedowns in heavyweight history while Pavlovich is a destroyer with his hands. One would think that Blaydes would need to take this fight to the ground as soon as possible.
Well, Blaydes decided to stand with Pavlovich. Early on, Blaydes actually landed some nice shots and was able to take some shots from Pavlovich. Then, Pavlovich dropped Blaydes and the chase was on. Blaydes tried once for a takedown and it was immediately shrugged off.
He went on a full on blitz and dropped Blaydes. A few follow up shots was all it took before it was stopped. Another massive TKO win in the first round at UFC Vegas 71 for Sergei Pavlovich.
Title shot next after UFC Vegas 71?
Make no mistake about it, it’s clear as to what should be next for Pavlovich. Sergei Pavlovich needs to be fighting for the heavyweight championship. He’s won six fights in a row all by knockout and not a single fight has made it to the second round.
The UFC is targeting Jon Jones – Stipe Miocic for Madison Square Garden. However, Miocic has been a hangup with this fight for the last year or so. According to people close to the promotion, Jon Jones has been ready to fight Miocic for over a year, but the issues have been from Miocic’s camp.
The promotion wanted them to fight in July, but they couldn’t make it happen. Now, it’s likely going to be the fall at MSG if it happens at all. It’s getting to the point where most fans wouldn’t mind Pavlovich getting the shot ahead of Miocic.
Jones wants the Miocic fight for legacy and I get it, but nobody is more dangerous than Sergei Pavlovich at this time. He deserves a UFC heavyweight title shot and I hope he doesn’t have to wait too long to get it.