After defeating Kelvin Gastelum at UFC Vegas 34, what’s next for Jared Cannonier?

This past Saturday at UFC Vegas 34, we saw a big time matchup in the middleweight division headline the card. Jared Cannonier (14-5) was taking on former Ultimate Fighter winner Kelvin Gastelum (17-8, 1 NC).

Both men entered the contest with a lot to prove. Gastelum was at the top of the division just a couple of years ago but he’s recently fallen on hard times. The former TUF winner was entering Saturday just 1-4 in his last five.

Jared Cannonier was looking to get back into the UFC title picture himself. Last year, Cannonier was being called out by Israel Adesanya. However, before Cannonier could get a UFC title shot against Adesanya, he had to defeat former champion Robert Whittaker.

Cannonier ultimately came up short against Whittaker and never got that shot at Adesanya. With the stakes high for both men, UFC Vegas 34 looked like it was going to deliver a great main event.

The main event did deliver a solid contest. Cannonier and Gastelum fought a very close fight throughout. However, it was Cannonier who was landing the more forceful shots throughout and even dropping Gastelum once. Gastelum’s corner thought he won, but all three judges gave the fight to the Killa Gorilla which was the right call.

What’s next after UFC Vegas 34?

After the event, Cannonier said that he wanted to be active and get a fight when he can. Fortunately for him, the UFC has a few big middleweight fights coming up that could provide the perfect opponent.

One fight to watch out for is the UFC Vegas 36 headliner between Darren Till (18-3-1) and Derek Brunson (22-7). These two contenders are both ranked inside the top ten and whoever wins next Saturday will likely be in the top five.

Pairing Cannonier with the winner would potentially give the UFC middleweight champion a fresh contender. Another main event to watch out for is the headliner between Paulo Costa (13-1) and Marvin Vettori (17-4-1).

Both of those men are coming off losses in UFC title shots. They, like Cannonier, are at the very top of the division. The winner of this matchup would provide the highest ranked opponent for Cannonier, but with them not fighting until October, there will be more of a delay.

If Cannonier is really wanting to be active, next weekend’s main event is the one to watch. If either Till or Brunson come out clean with a victory, the UFC could pair them up with Cannonier at the end of the year.

Where does Kelvin Gastelum go after loss at UFC Vegas 34?

This past weekend at UFC Vegas 34, we saw a big time headliner in the middleweight division. Top contender Jared Cannonier (14-5) was taking on former interim title challenger and Ultimate Fighter winner Kelvin Gastelum (17-8, 1 NC).

It’s been an interesting few years in the UFC for Kelvin Gastelum. In May of 2018, Gastelum edged out Jacare Souza and that win put him in line for a title shot against Robert Whittaker.

Gastelum was supposed to fight Whittaker in Australia, but Whittaker had to pull out the day of the fight. The UFC then created an interim title and had Gastelum fight Israel Adesanya. To date, Gastelum has still had the best fight against Israel Adesanya at 185 pounds.

That said, Gastelum fell short. That loss started a streak where Gastelum went just 1-4 in five fights. On Saturday night, he was looking to get back into the title picture with a win over Cannonier. Unfortunately, that didn’t happen.

At UFC Vegas 34, Cannonier was just a step ahead of Gastelum for three rounds. Gastelum was incredibly competitive, but couldn’t put it together enough to win three rounds. All three judges gave the fight to Cannonier with a 48-47 scorecard.

What’s next after UFC Vegas 34?

With this latest loss, Gastelum is now just 1-5 in his last six UFC appearances. After winning The Ultimate Fighter, Gastelum attempted to move down to the welterweight division. That seemed to be the division the UFC wanted him in and the one he’s best suited for.

However, after constantly struggling to make the weight, he moved up to 185 pounds. He started strong there with wins over Tim Kennedy and Vitor Belfort although the Belfort win was overturned due to THC in Gastelum’s system.

After the Belfort fight, Gastelum is just 3-6 in the UFC’s middleweight division. Granted, half of those losses were to UFC champions and the other half were to contenders ranked inside the top ten.

Now, you really have to think about what’s next for Gastelum. I’m with the UFC’s original plan in that I wish he could make 170 pounds. I don’t see any scenario where Kelvin Gastelum becomes at champion at 185. However, he would be a problem at 170 if he could do it.

That said, we know he’s not likely going down that path. So, what should the UFC do with him next? Well, I think it’s time for a bit of a reset. One option could be a fight with Brad Tavares (19-6). Tavares has won two straight and he’s just outside the top ten.

This would give Gastelum a ranked opponent still, but it would be the step back in competition he needs. Another option could be the winner of the upcoming matchup between Kevin Holland (21-7) and Kyle Daukaus (10-2).

These two are scheduled to fight in October and whoever wins will likely be looking for a ranked opponent. This is another potential matchup that makes sense for Gastelum. At the end of the day, if he’s staying at 185, it’s time to step back in competition.

Jared Cannonier edges Kelvin Gastelum at UFC Vegas 34

We had a big time middleweight showdown in the main event of UFC Vegas 34 tonight. Headlining the card was Jared Cannonier (13-5) who was taking on the tough Kelvin Gastelum (17-7, 1 NC).

In April of 2019, Gastelum fought Israel Adesanya for the interim UFC middleweight title. Gastelum gave Adesanya the best fight he’s ever had at middleweight, but came up short. After that, Gastelum lost back-to-back fights to Darren Till and Jack Hermansson.

Earlier this year, he won against Ian Heinisch to snap the losing streak. However, he then lost to former UFC champion Robert Whittaker. Gastelum has been taking on the best of the best, but he’s still just 1-4 in his last five.

Jared Cannonier turned his career around when he moved down to 185. Cannonier debuted in the UFC at heavyweight. He then dropped to light heavyweight before finally settling at middleweight.

So far, he’s 3-1 with three stoppages at 185. He was in a title eliminator at UFC 254 against Robert Whittaker, but he came up short. Cannonier also broke his arm in that fight and it’s kept him out since then.

UFC Vegas 34 Recap

Round 1

The UFC Vegas 34 main event kicked off with a touch of the gloves. Cannonier opened the striking with a jab and a high kick attempt. Gastelum was looking to attack the body with a jab in the opening seconds.

Nice leg kick lands for Gastelum. Cannonier holds the center and explodes into a combination off a counter. Gastelum then pushes forward with his own combination and Cannonier circles out.

Lots of pressure for Cannonier who lands a beautiful body kick. Nice 1-2 lands for Cannonier as Gastelum looks to get on the inside. Leg kick for Gastelum lands and he follows it with his own 1-2. Two brutal kicks land for Cannonier with the finishing kick landing flush on the calf.

Gastelum wings a massive left that just misses the mark. Nice left straight lands for Cannonier who seems more measured late in the round. Lots of movement from Gastelum here as he looks to hold the center.

Big 1-2 lands for Cannonier. Gastelum pushes forward and lands a grazing right hand. Leg kick lands for Gastelum, but there wasn’t much on it. The round comes to a close and it’s 1-0 Cannonier at UFC Vegas 34.

Round 2

Gasteum’s corner was asking for more kicks in between rounds at UFC Vegas 34. Entering the second, Gastelum was very light on his feet while Cannonier was plotting forward. Cannonier was looking for a bomb, while Gastelum was looking for volume.

Gastelum teases a takedown attempt, but circles back to the center. Jab to the body lands for Gastelum. Leg kick lands for Gastelum and Cannonier lands a counter jab. Power jab lands for Cannonier, but Gastelum counters with a clean combination.

Big calf kick lands for Cannonier. Pressure here from Gastelum as he looks for his openings. A nice combination lands for Gastelum and Cannonier is looking for a massive power shot. Cannonier is looking a little tired in the second round.

Gastelum lands a huge left hand and then spins to the back of Cannonier. They break and Gastelum lands a vicious 1-2 that draws a smile from Cannonier. Cannonier tries to answer back, but Gastelum is looking slick here in the second.

Cannonier whiffs on a big head kick attempt. Gastelum lands to the body and he looks for a combination, but Cannonier defends well. Cannonier lands a kick, but Gastelum counters with a beautiful combination. Round comes to a close and it’s 1-1 at UFC Vegas 34.

Round 3

Entering the third at UFC Vegas 34 and Gastelum appears to have all the momentum. Gastelum immediately takes the center to start the third and he moves forward to pressure Cannonier. Cannonier tries to explode into a combination but nothing lands.

Gastelum lands a jab, but Cannonier just misses a head kick. Then out of no where a massive right hook from Cannonier sits Gastelum down. Gastelum pops right up but he’s wobbly here. Cannonier looks for a head kick and just misses.

Somehow, Gastelum has seemed to recover insanely quickly. He shoots in for a takedown and almost gets Cannonier down. However, Cannonier defends well. Cannonier lands a big knee to the body and they break.

Cannonier throws two right hands, but they don’t seem to even phase Gastelum. Gastelum lands a beautiful combination and Cannonier is slowing down. Both men land beautiful shots with one minute left in the round.

Nice combination lands for Cannonier and he’s trying to remain composed near the end of the round. Gastelum circles on the outside and wings a couple of big shots. Lots of pressure here from Gastelum as the round ends. 2-1 Cannonier after two here at UFC Vegas 34.

Round 4

Gastelum looked much better in between rounds than Cannonier at UFC Vegas 34. Immediate pressure from Gastelum as the fourth round starts. Brutal body kick lands for Gastelum while Cannonier is head hunting.

Cannonier explodes forward and lands some big power shots and forces Gastelum to clinch. Gastelum pushes Cannonier against the fence and tries to get a takedown. However, Cannonier defends well and he forces a break.

Nice right straight lands for Cannonier. Gastelum lands a nice right hand and a leg kick as he circles. Cannonier holding the center while Gastelum is circling. Jab to the body lands for Gastelum and Cannonier counters with a nice right hook.

Cannonier just misses on a huge right hand and head kick. Gastelum lands another nice leg kick and he definitely looks fresher here in the fourth. A brief exchange occurs for both and it appears that Cannonier dropped Gastelum.

However, it wasn’t very clear. Both men land good shots as the round comes to a close and this round could have gone to either. I lean ever so slightly towards Cannonier which would put him up 3-1 at UFC Vegas 34.

Round 5

Entering the final round at UFC Vegas 34 and both corners think they’re up 3-1. Gastelum opens the striking in the final round with a jab to the body. Big power shots land for Cannonier and those definitely got Gastelum’s attention.

Power leg kick lands for Gastelum. Gastelum holding the center while Cannonier is circling in the final frame. Good combination lands for Gastelum and Cannonier steps in with a huge right hand counter. Beautiful jab lands from Gastelum.

1-2 over the top lands for Gastelum and he chains it into a takedown attempt. Gastelum briefly gets the takedown, but Cannonier pops right back up. Halfway through the round and this has been Gastelum’s round thus far.

Cannonier forces a break and were back to striking. Huge combination lands for Gastelum. Another nice combination from Gastelum and he’s pulling away with this fifth round. Cannonier throws a 1-2, but there’s no reaction from Gastelum.

Jab lands for Cannonier and there’s one minute left. Nice left hook lands for Gastelum and he lands a leg kick. He immediately tries to get a takedown, but Cannonier stays standing. Gastelum active here in the final seconds, but just as the bell sounds, Cannonier lands a huge knee.

I think Gastelum definitely takes the final round, but I have Cannonier winning the fight. That said, this fight could go either way at UFC Vegas 34.

Jared Cannonier def. Kelvin Gastelum by (48-47, 48-47, 48-47)

UFC Vegas 34 Preview: Jared Cannonier – Kelvin Gastelum

We have a big time middleweight showdown in the main event of UFC Vegas 34 tomorrow night. Headlining the card is Jared Cannonier (13-5) who will be taking on the tough Kelvin Gastelum (17-7, 1 NC).

Gastelum will be making the walk tomorrow night as the ninth ranked middleweight in the UFC. A couple of years ago, Gastelum looked like he was going to be a future champion. However, his career has really turned since 2019.

In April of 2019, Gastelum fought Israel Adesanya for the interim title. Gastelum gave Adesanya the best fight he’s ever had at middleweight, but came up short. After that, Gastelum lost back-to-back fights to Darren Till and Jack Hermansson.

Earlier this year, he won against Ian Heinisch to snap the losing streak. However, he then lost to former UFC champion Robert Whittaker. Gastelum has been taking on the best of the best, but he’s still just 1-4 in his last five.

Jared Cannonier turned his career around when he moved down to 185. Cannonier debuted in the UFC at heavyweight. He then dropped to light heavyweight before finally settling at middleweight.

So far, he’s 3-1 with three stoppages at 185. He was in a title eliminator at UFC 254 against Robert Whittaker, but he came up short. Cannonier also broke his arm in that fight and it’s kept him out since then.

UFC Vegas 34 Prediction

When it comes to the UFC Vegas 34 main event, I’m very curious to see the gameplan of Kelvin Gastelum. When Gastelum won against Ian Heinisch earlier this year, he really leaned on his wrestling.

He had gone away from his wrestling in recent fights, but went back to his routes and got the win. Gastelum was unable to use his wrestling against Robert Whittaker and was ultimately outclassed in his last fight.

Cannonier will be the much bigger man tomorrow night. He will have a significant reach advantage as well as a power advantage. Gastelum is going to need to use his speed and mix things up.

I’m expecting to see Cannonier attack with leg kicks early on at UFC Vegas 34. In the distance striking exchanges, I really like the power and precision of Cannonier. While I wouldn’t rule Gastelum out, I think Cannonier is just going to be too much.

I see Cannonier bouncing back tomorrow night and getting the win. That said, Gastelum’s key could be his cardio and wrestling. If Gastelum gets his hand raised tomorrow, I have a feeling it will be due to the cardio advantage and later round success. However, I don’t see it happening.

Prediction: Jared Cannonier by Unanimous Decision

UFC: Kelvin Gastelum steps in for Paulo Costa to take on Jared Cannonier

The highly anticipated UFC main event between Paulo Costa (13-1) and Jared Cannonier (13-5) is off. ESPN’s Brett Okamoto was the first to report this evening that Costa has withdrawn from the main event that is currently scheduled for August 21st.

This is the second straight UFC main event that Costa has withdrawn from. Costa was originally supposed to fight former UFC middleweight champion Robert Whittaker back in April. However, an illness forced him to withdraw from that matchup.

Kelvin Gastelum (16-7, 1 NC) stepped in for Costa to take on the former UFC champion. Now, Gastelum will be replacing Costa once again. Okamoto reported that Kelvin Gastelum has already accepted the fight and will be taking on Jared Cannonier on August 21st.

New UFC Main Event

This is a big opportunity for the former UFC Ultimate Fighter winner Kelvin Gastelum. As mentioned, the last time we saw Gastelum was back in April when he lost to Robert Whittaker. That loss dropped Gastelum to 1-4 in his last five fights. Granted, he was coming off of a good win against Ian Heinisch when he fought Whittaker.

For years, Kelvin Gastelum struggled to make the UFC’s welterweight limit. After multiple failed attempts to make 170, Gastelum moved up to middleweight. He rose to the top of the division and on the heels of a knockout over former UFC middleweight champion Michael Bisping, Gastelum earned himself a title shot.

Gastelum fought Israel Adesanya for the interim middleweight title and came up short. After that loss, Gastelum lost two more to bring his UFC losing streak to three. He snapped that earlier this year. Gastelum needs a win over one of the top guys in the division to prove he’s still one of the best.

Fighting Jared Cannonier gives him the chance to do that. Like Gastelum, Cannonier is coming off of a loss to Robert Whittaker. That loss was Cannonier’s first loss in the UFC’s middleweight division. Prior to that loss, Cannonier was 3-0 with three TKOs to start his middleweight career. While it’s not the main event we thought we’d get, this should be a fantastic matchup on August 21st.

UFC books headliner between Paulo Costa and Jared Cannonier

The UFC has finalized a big time headliner in their middleweight division. Dana White confirmed with ESPN’s Brett Okamoto this evening that the promotion had finalized a headliner between Paulo Costa (13-1) and Jared Cannonier (13-5).

The matchup will headline a UFC Fight Night on August 21st. Both of these men are looking to bounce back after losses in their last time out. Cannonier took on Robert Whittaker at UFC 254 on Fight Island.

Entering that matchup, Cannonier was 3-0 at middleweight with three TKO victories. The Killa Gorilla looked like he was going to be the next challenger for the champion, Israel Adesanya.

However, to get a title shot, Cannonier had to defeat the former champion in Whittaker. While Cannonier was able to hurt Whittaker a little in the third round, the fight was all Robert Whittaker.

Whittaker won a decision and Cannonier suffered his first loss at 185. However, there is no shame in losing to Robert Whittaker and that’s why Cannonier’s stock didn’t fall much. Now, the UFC is giving him the opportunity to get right back in the title picture with this headlining spot.

UFC redemption for Costa

A month prior to Cannonier’s matchup against Whittaker, Paulo Costa got his shot at the middleweight title. In the main event of UFC 253 on Fight Island, the undefeated Costa took on Israel Adesanya.

Costa’s blistering style and power was expected to challenge Stylebender. However, Costa put on a horrific performance and Adesanya stopped him in the second round. If I remember correctly, I don’t think Costa landed a single significant shot with his hands.

After the fight, Costa came forward with some odd excuses like the fact that he drank until he blacked out the night before his fight. However, most don’t believe some of the stories that he’s told.

Nevertheless, UFC 253 was an embarrassment for Costa. Costa was supposed to fight Robert Whittaker last month, but he had to pull out after getting sick. Now, the promotion is putting him in there with another top contender in Cannonier. Whoever wins this matchup should be on the short list for title challengers in early 2022.

After snapping losing streak at UFC 258, what’s next for Kelvin Gastelum?

This past Saturday at UFC 258, Kelvin Gastelum (16-6) was fighting with his back against the wall. The former interim title challenger had lost three fights in a row leading up to UFC 258. Gastelum had a hungry Ian Heinisch (14-4) in front of him, ready to take his spot.

Heinisch has a lot of promise, however, he hasn’t been able to break through against top competition in the UFC. He was hoping to get that done against Kelvin Gastelum. However, Gastelum showed the world on Saturday night that he’s far from done.

From the opening bell, it felt that Kelvin Gastelum was in control on Saturday night. Heinisch was supposed to have the wrestling advantage, but it was actually Kelvin Gastelum who was winning the grappling exchanges.

Heinisch had moments in going for submissions, but nothing was ever close. Gastelum dropped the final round, but with the first two rounds in the bag, it didn’t matter. An emotional Gastelum saw his hand raised for the first time in a few years. So what does the UFC do with him next?

What’s next after UFC 258?

The middleweight division is in a very interesting spot at the moment. Currently, nine of the top 12 UFC middleweights in the world are booked for their next fight. One of those being Gastelum and another being the champion, Israel Adesanya.

The other middleweight who is not booked is an interesting opponent for Gastelum. That opponent would be the third ranked middleweight in the UFC, Jared Cannonier (13-5). Cannonier just suffered his first loss at middleweight back at UFC 254.

Had Cannonier won that fight, he would have earned the next title shot. However, he fell short against Robert Whittaker. Cannonier has been recovering from an injury, but this is the perfect matchup to make.

Cannonier needs a top opponent upon his return, and Gastelum would like to get someone in or around the UFC’s top five. To me, it seems like a perfect matchup for both. However, I would expect Gastelum stays ready in case someone falls out of the upcoming matchups over the next two months.

Should Robert Whittaker be upset with the UFC?

There is not really any doubt as to who is the number one contender in the UFC‘s middleweight division. The top contender in the division is the former champion, Robert Whittaker (22-5).

Whittaker lost the title to Israel Adesanya (20-0) at UFC 243 in 2019. However, outside of that fight against Adesanya, Whittaker has been perfect in the middleweight division. There’s been nobody who’s been able to defeat him.

Recently, it was announced that the UFC is having Adesanya move up to face Jan Blachowicz (27-8) at UFC 259. Adesanya will be attempting to become a two-division champion by capturing the light heavyweight championship.

The fighter that’s left in limbo in this situation is Robert Whittaker. There is nobody in the middleweight division that is more deserving of a shot at Adesanya than Whittaker. However, the promotion doesn’t believe that he’s ready for a shot at the title.

After UFC 254, Dana White said that Whittaker would be next for Adesanya. The promotion wanted to turn the fight around quick, but with a baby on the way, Whittaker wanted to spend the holidays with his family. That’s when the promotion changed their tune.

Should Whittaker be upset with the UFC?

Dana White said recently that Whittaker needs to fight someone else before he gets his next UFC title shot. In my opinion, this should be incredibly frustrating for the former middleweight champion.

Whittaker’s only loss at middleweight was to Adesanya. Outside of that, he’s been unbeaten since 2014. Darren Till (18-3-1) and Jared Cannonier (13-5) were both guaranteed title shots if they beat Whittaker in 2020.

However, Whittaker beat both of those contenders. It’s puzzling that the logic from the promotion is that Whittaker needs another win, however, I know that they’ll say it’s because he turned down their timeline for the middleweight title shot.

Yet, Jan Blachowicz had the same issue as Whittaker. Blachowicz just had a baby with his wife before resuming training for their fight in March. I have a strong feeling that Whittaker could have made that timeline work.

Ultimately, I believe the UFC and Adesanya were only interested in the Whittaker fight if it was able to happen quickly. The plan has been for them to move Adesanya up to light heavyweight to further his star power.

However, it’s not fair to the former champion. People have had title shots for much less and champions who have lost have gotten immediate title shots with less of a championship resume. I absolutely believe that Whittaker should be frustrated.

State of the UFC’s middleweight division entering 2021

Last night, we learned that the UFC‘s middleweight champion is officially moving up in weight for his next fight. Israel Adesanya (20-0) is moving up to light heavyweight to fight Jan Blachowicz (27-8) for the light heavyweight title at UFC 259. 

Adesanya is trying to become just the fifth fighter in the promotion’s history to hold two belts at the same time. There have been a lot of questions surrounding Adesanya’s future at 185 with him moving up.

The UFC middleweight champion has been very vocal about his desire to potentially fight Jon Jones (26-1, 1 NC) in 2021. If the UFC makes that fight should Adesanya win the light heavyweight title, the middleweight strap would be on ice.

However, Adesanya has said that he will definitely return to the UFC’s middleweight division no matter what. He stated that 185 is his natural weight class and where he feels the best. This move is to just challenge himself and further his legacy.

In all honesty, the move is actually a good thing for the middleweight division. There are great fights inside the division, however, Adesanya has defeated most of the fighters that sit inside the top ten.

UFC’s middleweight division in 2021

The top contender in the middleweight division is former UFC champion, Robert Whittaker (22-5). Whittaker went on an incredible run to grab the middleweight title, but was easily defeated by Adesanya last October.

Since then, Whittaker took out two of the more compelling contenders in the division. He defeated Darren Till (18-3-1) and Jared Cannonier (13-5) by decision. Both of those fighters were guys Adesanya was interested in fighting.

However, Whittaker turned them away. With the way Adesanya defeated Whittaker last year, the champion isn’t motivated for the rematch at this time. The word is that the UFC is looking to book Whittaker against former title challenger, Paulo Costa (13-1).

Costa was just knocked out by Adesanya at UFC 253. Prior to that, many thought he was the most dangerous contender in the division. There is preliminary talk about that fight being for an interim title, but that’s far from confirmed.

The two fighters I have my eyes on entering 2021 is Marvin Vettori (16-4-1) and Kevin Holland (21-5). Vettori has busted through in 2021 on the heels of four straight wins to fifth in the middleweight rankings.

The Italian middleweight has already lost to Adesanya, but he lost by split decision. One big win for Vettori in 2021 could make him next in line. Kevin Holland was our breakout fighter of the year in 2020.

Holland has become a star after going 5-0 this year. The entertaining middleweight gets his first main event opportunity against Derek Brunson (21-7) in March. Should he win that, he could be just a win away from a title shot.

If Holland can get a couple of wins, he’s probably the most compelling UFC challenger at 185 for Adesanya. There’s a little beef there already, and the fight’s buildup would be a lot of fun. Should be an interesting year at middleweight.

UFC Matchmaker: Jared Cannonier – Paulo Costa

This past weekend at UFC 254, Jared Cannonier (13-5) had his chance to cement his status as the number one contender in the middleweight division. He took on former middleweight champion, Robert Whittaker in the UFC 254 co-main event.

Cannonier had a couple of bright spots in the fight. He hurt Whittaker early with leg kicks, and wobbled Whittaker in the final minute of the fight. However, outside of those, it was a clear win for the former UFC champion.

Whittaker almost finished Cannonier early on in the third round with a headkick. The loss was the first loss for Cannonier since he dropped down to the middleweight division. Cannonier had been called out by UFC champion, Israel Adesanya, before the loss.

Now that Cannonier has suffered the loss, it’s back to the drawing board for the Killa Gorilla. In looking around at the rest of the middleweight division, I think there is a clear next step for the UFC. I think that the promotion should book Jared Cannonier – Paulo Costa (13-1).

Will the UFC make it happen?

This is the fight that just makes too much sense. Costa is coming off of a title loss to Adesanya at UFC 253. Prior to that loss, he was looked at as arguably the most terrifying contender in the UFC‘s middleweight division.

Cannonier just fought the former champion when he carried in a similar reputation. Both men lost in their big opportunities. The quickest way to have one of them re-establish their credibility in the division is to have one fight the other.

This would be a fantastic matchup for the UFC to make. The promotion is likely going to book the Adesanya – Whittaker rematch, and they could put this fight as the co-main event. The winner would re-establish themselves as the top contender in the UFC‘s middleweight division.