What’s next for Brian Ortega after UFC 266?

Brian Ortega, UFC

This past Saturday in the main event of UFC 266, the featherweight title was on the line. After coaching on The Ultimate Fighter, Alexander Volkanovski (23-1) defended his UFC title against Brian “T-City” Ortega (15-2, 1 NC).

I was incredibly intrigued by what kind of fight we would see from both men. Somehow, Volkanovski always seems to fly under the radar. Probably considering the fact that most believe he lost his second fight to Max Holloway.

Nevertheless, he holds two wins over Holloway and a win over Jose Aldo. He was the slight favorite, but there were a lot of people high on Brian Ortega. To be honest, I was one of them.

After Ortega’s performance against The Korean Zombie, I was convinced he was going to win the UFC title. However, over the last couple of weeks, I changed my pick leading up to the fight because I overlook Volkanovski so much and I’m glad I switched.

Ortega was game, but all night Volkanovski was a step ahead. However, there were two moments where Ortega almost got the win. In the third round, Ortega locked in a deep mounted guillotine choke.

Volkanovski admitted that he thought he was going to lose the belt, but he survived. Later in the round, Ortega almost got a triangle choke but against the champion slipped out. At the end of the day, Ortega came close, but Volkanovski retained at UFC 266.

What’s next for T-City after UFC 266?

Brian Ortega has now had two shots at UFC gold and he’s been brutalized in both of those fights. Max Holloway beat him up so bad that the doctors had to call a stop to the action.

The doctors almost had to call a stop to the fight on Saturday as well. However, despite how swollen and bloody Ortega got, he never stopped trying. In fact, he pushed forward and threw everything he had in the final round on Saturday night.

To me, it’s clear that Brian Ortega is not the best featherweight in the UFC, but he might be the toughest. His heart is unmatched and he wasn’t going anywhere despite the damage he took from the champion.

After this loss, he’s going to need to take some time off. However, when he’s ready to return, I think he’ll be right back in the mix. The Max Holloway – Yair Rodriguez fight is being looked at as a title eliminator in November.

Personally, I think a great fight would be with him and whoever loses that fight. That would give him enough time off, but it would also give him someone in a similar position. That’s what I think the UFC should do next for Ortega.

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