After suffering a setback at UFC 264, what’s next for Wonderboy Thompson?

This past Saturday in the co-main event of UFC 264, we saw a pivotal matchup in the welterweight division. Two former title challengers battled it out as Gilbert Burns (20-4) took on Stephen “Wonderboy” Thompson (16-5-1).

For Wonderboy, this was the first time the UFC was giving him an opponent ranked above him since his title fights with Tyron Woodley. Over the last couple of years, Thompson has had to play the gatekeeper role at 170 pounds.

Wonderboy was being looked at as one of the guys who could potentially give Kamaru Usman problems. Thompson’s unique style and movement make him a tough puzzle for anyone in the UFC‘s welterweight division.

The big question going into this fight would be whether or not Burns could take Wonderboy down. In the first round, Burns was able to. However, in the second round, Wonderboy kept it standing and controlled the range.

Heading into the final round, all three judges at UFC 264 had it even. Wonderboy rocked Burns early and was dominating the standup. However, Burns got the fight to the mat and controlled Wonderboy for the entire second half which gave him the decision win.

What’s next after UFC 264?

This was a really tough loss for Wonderboy Thompson. The fight was right there for him if he could have just stayed on his feet in the third round at UFC 264. The fight looked like it was trending in the right direction before the final takedown.

Now, Wonderboy goes back to the drawing board. It is worth noting that I don’t believe Wonderboy really loses a lot of ground after Saturday night. In fact, in the updated UFC rankings, Wonderboy is still ranked fourth in the division.

To me, the 38 year old still has plenty in the tank and I could still see him getting one more crack at the title in the future under the right circumstances. So, where does he go from here. Well, one potential option would be a rematch with Jorge Masvidal (35-15).

Wonderboy defeated Masvidal and Gamebred has long talked about them fighting again. However, I think the UFC has other plans for Masvidal. If I’m going to pick out a guy who I think is the most realistic and a perfect opponent, I’m going to say Neil Magny (25-8).

Magny has won four out of five and he’s currently ranked eight in the division. He needs a top opponent and Wonderboy is going to need a dance partner. Pair the two up and the winner is right in the mix.

Khamzat Chimaev’s UFC Return is Imminent

The UFC prospect that generated the most buzz in 2020 is getting ready to return. Khamzat Chimaev (9-0) is inching closer and closer to making his way back inside the octagon and he’s heading to Las Vegas this week to meet with the UFC.

Chimaev came onto the scene last July when he made his UFC debut on Fight Island. Chimaev won two fights in ten days and he did it in extremely dominating fashion. He also did it in two separate weight classes.

Then, in August, he fought Gerald Meerschaert and knocked him out with the first punch he through. Chimaev was being fast-tracked towards the top of the UFC‘s welterweight division. However, it became tough to get anyone to take a fight against him.

Ultimately, he landed a main event slot against top contender Leon Edwards. The two were set to meet in December, however, Edwards had to pull out due to COVID. They rescheduled the fight two more times, but Chimaev’s own battle with COVID scrapped those two fights.

Chimaev’s battle with COVID was so tough that he hinted at retiring from the UFC altogether. But, the promotion got him the medical help he needed and he’s been training like a mad man ever since. Dana White said on Mike Swick’s Podcast this week that he’s scheduled to meet with Chimaev regarding his return.

Who should the UFC pair him with?

The UFC is going to give Chimaev a quality opponent in his next fight. To me, there’s one guy who fits the bill and he’s already been having back-and-forth with Chimaev. That man is the Haitian Sensation, Neil Magny (25-8).

Magny is coming off of a big win over Neil Magny last month. When the UFC was having a hard time finding Chimaev an opponent, Magny was the one guy who was very vocal about fighting Chimaev.

However, at the time, the UFC wanted to give Chimaev someone with a little more behind their name. Now that the Chimaev momentum has slowed down, I think it’s a perfect test to have him fight Magny. A fight with Magny will tell us a ton about how good Khamzat Chimaev really is.

After loss at UFC Vegas 26, what’s next for Geoff Neal?

This past Saturday at UFC Vegas 26, one of the most anticipated matchups was Geoff Neal (13-4) – Neil Magny (25-8). Both men were coming off losses and both were looking to get right back into the thick of things at 170 pounds.

2020 turned out to be a tough year for the UFC‘s Geoff Neal. Neal came into the year looking like he was going to be a title contender by the end of it. After earning himself a contract on The Contender Series, Neal started his UFC career 5-0.

Only one of those victories came by decision and two of the wins were against Mike Perry and Belal Muhammad. However, health issues outside the octagon really delayed the progression of Geoff Neal.

Neal was set to take on Neil Magny halfway through the year, but he had to pull out due to some health issues. Handz of Steel ended up in the hospital with the issues that he was dealing with.

The UFC finally got him healthy enough to fight and he took on Stephen “Wonderboy” Thompson in December. Wonderboy used distance to frustrate Neal and walked away with a decision victory.

Well, the same thing happened at UFC Vegas 26. I figured Geoff Neal would use his power and pressure to hurt Magny, but the jab of Magny and the distance control was too much. Neil Magny ultimately walked away with a decision victory.

What’s next after UFC Vegas 26?

After this loss, Neal said that he wanted to take some time away to let his body heel. He said that the last year had really been tough on him physically and the two straight UFC losses took a toll on him.

When he is ready to return, what should the UFC do with him? Well, I think they definitely need to give him someone in the top fifteen. We need to see him against another ranked opponent to see if there’s anything left of Geoff Neal the top contender.

Opponents like Sean Brady (14-0) and Li Jingliang (18-6) are two names that come to mind. Both guys are surging contenders on the verge of the top ten. If the UFC put Neal in with either of them it would be a good measurement fight to see exactly where Geoff Neal is.

After another solid win at UFC Vegas 26, what’s next for Neil Magny?

This past Saturday at UFC Vegas 26, we saw a big welterweight contest between Neil Magny (25-8) and Geoff Neal (13-4). These two were originally supposed to fight last year, but Neal had to pull out due to some health issues.

2020 was a great year for Neil Magny who returned after a USADA issue. Magny went a perfect 3-0 inside the octagon with a big win over former UFC welterweight champion Robbie Lawler.

On the heels of those three wins, Magny had a main event slot booked against Michael Chiesa back in January. Chiesa halted all of the Magny momentum and was able to pickup the decision win.

This matchup at UFC Vegas 26 was a big opportunity for Magny to shake off that loss and get back on track. To be honest, I was worried about how Magny would do with someone like Geoff Neal.

Geoff Neal is great about pressuring his opponents and throwing a ton of heat in his shots. Historically, those type of fighters have given Neil Magny problems. However, Neal proved to be no problem for Magny on Saturday night.

Magny was able to work his jab and keep Neal at distance from landing anything major. Ultimately, Magny walked away with a clean decision victory at UFC Vegas 26 and he’s right back on track.

What’s next after UFC Vegas 26?

With the victory on Saturday, Magny has risen to eighth in the UFC’s welterweight rankings. With that ranking, it’s time for Magny to get a shot against someone near or around the top five.

However, there is one name that could show up outside the top ten. That name is Khamzat Chimaev (9-0). Chimaev has been vocal about wanting to fight Magny and Magny has been vocal about wanting to fight Chimaev.

Chimeav is set to return sometime this summer and if Magny wants to fight, the UFC will definitely make that matchup happen. Another name that could make sense for Magny is Jorge Masvidal (35-15).

I know that might throw some people off, but at the end of the day, Masvidal is ranked seventh currently. Only one spot ahead of Magny and he’s coming off of a brutal knockout loss. A fight with Magny could be good for all parties involved.

The other opponent which would make a lot of sense is Vicente Luque (20-7-1). Luque has won three and a row and is currently ranked fifth in the welterweight division. A fight between the two would generate a new top contender for the UFC.

UFC Vegas 26 Preview: Neil Magny – Geoff Neal

Probably the one fight that has the most hype at UFC Vegas 26, is the welterweight showdown between Neil Magny (24-8) and Geoff Neal (13-3). These two top ten welterweights will finally cross paths tomorrow night on the main card.

Originally, these two were supposed to fight last year. However, Neal had to pull out of the fight. Because of some health issues, Geoff Neal only competed once in the octagon during 2020.

His one fight came in December against Stephen “Wonderboy” Thompson. Thompson outstruck Geoff Neal and won a decision. It was the first loss in the UFC for Handz of Steel.

After earning a contract on Dana White’s Contender Series, Neal started out a perfect 5-0 in the UFC. He holds victories over Mike Perry, Niko Price, and Belal Muhammad. A win over Neil Magny would be huge in getting Neal back on track towards the top of the division.

After serving a USADA suspension, Neil Magny returned to the UFC in full force last year. Magny went a perfect 3-0 which included a win over former UFC welterweight champion Robbie Lawler.

The Haitian Sensation main evented a Fight Night back in January against Michael Chiesa. Had Magny won that fight, he might’ve been looking at a UFC title eliminator next. However, Magny was shutout by Chiesa and now he’s looking to bounce back as well.

UFC Vegas 26 Prediction

This UFC Vegas 26 matchup is a big fight for both men. Both are right inside the top ten and both are coming off of a loss. A win for either man would put them back on track and might get them someone near the top five in their next fight.

When it comes to this matchup, it all comes down to which Neil Magny we get. If Neil Magny is the one pushing the pace and he can mix in his wrestling, he has an excellent chance of winning tomorrow night.

However, if Magny is backing up and letting Geoff Neal lead the dance, he’s going to be in trouble. Both men could win tomorrow at UFC Vegas 26, but I think this matchup really favors Geoff Neal.

I think you’re going to see Neal fight like he really has something to prove tomorrow night. I’m expecting a lot of forward pressure and don’t be surprised if you see a big shot land that drops Magny. Magny is durable, but I see him getting hurt tomorrow.

Prediction: Geoff Neal by TKO – Round 2

UFC booking Neil Magny – Geoff Neal

The UFC is finalizing a fun matchup in the welterweight division. ESPN’s Brett Okamoto was the first to report today that the promotion was finalizing a matchup between top fifteen contenders Geoff Neal (13-3) and Neil Magny (24-8).

The two welterweights will clash at a UFC Fight Night scheduled for May 8th. Originally, these two were supposed to fight last year, but the fight fell through. Now, these two will finally get a chance to meet inside the octagon.

For Geoff Neal, he will be looking to bounce back from his first UFC loss. Back in December, Neal got his first headlining opportunity when he took on former title challenger, Stephen “Wonderboy” Thompson.

Unfortunately for Neal, he was picked apart by Thompson on the feet. However, it is worth noting that Neal was dealing with vision issues for the second half of the fight. Nevertheless, Thompson won and Thompson was fighting injured as well.

Prior to that, Neal was 5-0 in the UFC. In those five wins, only Belal Muhammad was able to go the distance with Neal. This is a big opportunity for Neal to get back on track and jump into the top ten.

UFC bounce back opportunity

Standing across from Neal on May 8th is another welterweight that is looking to bounce back. Neil Magny returned in 2020 and went 3-0 which pushed him into the top ten of the UFC’s welterweight division.

From there, Magny got a shot against Michael Chiesa. The winner of that matchup was poised to inch closer to a title shot. Magny was ultimately dominated by Chiesa and lost a decision.

Now, Magny is looking to bounce back. There had been some initial chatter that Magny would take on Khamzat Chimaev. However, Chimaev will not be ready until July and Magny wanted to stay active. With that, the UFC booked this matchup and it’s a good one that fans should be excited about.

UFC: Khamzat Chimaev – Neil Magny in July?

One of the UFC‘s breakout stars in 2020 is getting closer to a return. Khamzat Chimaev (9-0) has been dealing with complications from COVID-19 for months now. Chimaev had to pull out of two main event slots due to those complications.

The young star became so frustrated that he actually announced his retirement on Instagram. However, the UFC quickly came out and said that Chimaev was just emotional after attempting a premature return to training. 

Since then, Chimaev has been listening to the doctors. His condition is getting better every day and now it appears that we are close to the light at the end of the tunnel. Chimaev’s manager, Ali Abdelaziz, laid out the timeline for Chimaev’s UFC return.

Abdelaziz told ESPN, “He’s probably going to start training in the middle of April, and is looking to fight in the beginning of July. He’s still getting medical treatment on a daily basis, but he is doing much better. Neil Magny is the guy we have in mind as an opponent, but let’s see what happens.”

The UFC was interested in the Neil Magny (24-8) fight prior to Chimaev’s retirement post. Magny is a force inside the top fifteen and he’s not an easy matchup for anyone. A fight with Magny would be a great test for the Chetchen star.

Will the UFC book this matchup?

Neil Magny is up for this fight assuming that Chimaev is ready to go. Magny told MMA Fighting, “I will fight him any day of the week, but there’s no way I’m putting my career on hold so that he could hopefully fight me come July.”

We last saw Magny in the UFC back in January. Magny took on Michael Chiesa and lost a decision in a main event on Fight Island. That loss to Chiesa snapped a three-fight win streak for The Haitian Sensation.

However, despite the loss, Magny is still ranked inside the UFC’s top ten at welterweight. This would be a really tough test for Chimaev, but it’s a fight that I’d love to see. These two have gone back and forth and the promotion should definitely look to book this if Chimaev can make it.

UFC Matchmaker: Khamzat Chimaev – Neil Magny

One of the biggest stories in the UFC during 2020 was the rise of Khamzat Chimaev (9-0). Chimaev made his debut on Fight Island in July and dominated his way to a victory. Just ten days after his debut, Chimaev fought again on Fight Island.

This time, Chimaev fought at his natural weight class of 170 pounds. Chimaev took on prospect Rhys McKee and completely dominated him as well. Two incredibly dominant UFC victories in the span of ten days and the hype train was off and running.

From there, Chimaev went back to 185 pounds and fought Gerald Meerschaert. Meerschaert had been in there with some really tough guys and was supposed to test Chimaev. After dominating his first two fights with his wrestling, Chimaev showed off his striking against Meerschaert.

Just 17 seconds into the first round, Khamzat Chimaev knocked Gerald Meerschaert out. The UFC then had trouble getting Chimaev a fight. Incredibly, the promotion settled on an opponent and it was the third ranked welterweight in the world, Leon Edwards (18-3).

The matchup was scheduled for December. However, Edwards came down with COVID and the fight was cancelled. The UFC tried rebooking the fight two more times, however, Chimaev’s own troubles with COVID cancelled the fight both times.

Chimaev was recently flown to the US for medical care due to his complications from COVID. The UFC is now looking at a June return for Chimaev who is currently ranked fifteenth in the welterweight division. I believe they are already sizing up the perfect opponent for Chimaev.

UFC booking Chimaev – Magny?

While the UFC was looking for an opponent for Chimaev in 2020, there was one welterweight who was vocal about his desire to fight him. That welterweight was Neil Magny (24-8). The Haitian Sensation has been very vocal about wanting to fight Chimaev for a while now.

The two have recently gone back and forth on social media which has added fuel to the fire. The UFC is going to need an opponent for Chimaev to come back to and there aren’t many that are better for him that Magny.

Magny had a very good 2020 going 3-0. He is coming off of a loss to Michael Chiesa, however, he’s still a fixture in the UFC’s top 15 at welterweight. The fight makes sense from a rankings perspective and there’s heat there. In reality, this was probably a more logical next step for Chimaev anyway.

What’s next Michael Chiesa after UFC Fight Island 8?

Yesterday, Michael Chiesa (18-4) remained unbeaten at welterweight. In the main event of UFC Fight Island 8, Chiesa took on Neil Magny (24-8). Magny entered the contest on a three-fight win streak after a sensational 2020.

Both men ranked just inside the top ten of the UFC‘s welterweight division. Whoever won this fight was poised to make a run at a top five opponent in their next one. Originally, I thought Magny would have the advantage in a decision fight.

Magny has five-round experience while Chiesa has never gone past the third round. Combine that with the fact that Magny had an active 2020 while Chiesa recovered from injuries and I thought this was going to be Magny’s fight.

I was wrong about that one. At UFC Fight Island 8, Michael Chiesa delivered a fantastic performance that saw him win four of the five rounds on all three judges scorecards. Chiesa looked incredibly in the UFC main event yesterday.

I was really impressed with his ability to land shots on Magny while closing the distance. In addition to that, Chiesa also did a number on Magny in dominating the grappling exchanges. Michael Chiesa made a statement with his win and his callout yesterday after the fight.

What’s next after UFC Fight Island 8?

In his post-fight interview, Chiesa made a big callout of Colby Covington (16-2). The former interim UFC welterweight champion currently doesn’t have a fight lined up and Chiesa made it clear that he wants that fight.

Unfortunately for him, I don’t believe he’s getting that fight. The UFC has made it very clear that they are trying to book Covington against his rival and former friend, Jorge Masvidal (35-14).

With Covington not an option, the UFC has a couple of options in my opinion. In a few weeks, Kamaru Usman (17-1) is defending his welterweight title against Gilbert Burns (19-3). Depending on how that fight goes, I could see the promotion giving Chiesa the loser of that fight.

Another option could be Stephen “Wonderboy” Thompson (16-4-1). Wonderboy also doesn’t have a fight, but he’s dealing with some injuries and his timetable for a return is uncertain. Should he be able to go relatively soon, that would be another fun matchup for Chiesa.

What’s next for Neil Magny after having winning streak snapped at UFC Fight Island 8?

There aren’t many welterweights in the UFC that had a better year in 2020 than Neil Magny (24-8). After having a lengthy layoff, Magny made his return to the octagon in 2020 and went a perfect 3-0.

Magny’s winning streak found him ranked ninth in the welterweight division. Yesterday at UFC Fight Island 8, Magny got the opportunity to take on the eighth ranked welterweight in the division in Michael Chiesa (18-4).

Chiesa was also riding a three-fight winning streak at welterweight. However, he hadn’t competed in almost a year due to some injuries. With Magny’s point style fighting and his 2020 activity level, I favored Magny in the matchup.

However, the fight didn’t go as I thought it would. I figured Magny would try to fight from distance a little more. However, the UFC main event mainly took place mainly in close quarters. In the grappling exchanges, Chiesa got the better of Magny throughout the fight.

In the third round, Magny finally started to pick it up. Just as you thought Magny would turn the tables and use his cardio advantage, Chiesa flipped the script and won the final two rounds at UFC Fight Island 8. Magny lost 49-46 on all three scorecards snapping his winning streak.

What’s next after UFC Fight Island 8?

As mentioned, Magny had a three-fight winning streak heading into yesterday. Had he been able to defeat Chiesa, he could’ve been looking at a top five opponent in his next fight inside the octagon. However, that didn’t happen.

So what should the UFC do with The Haitian Sensation? A fight that could make a lot of sense is a battle with Geoff Neal (13-3). Neal and Magny were originally supposed to fight in 2020, however, Neal had to pull out of their original matchup.

Neal just lost to Stephen Thompson so both men are in a very similar position. Both are coming off of losses and their ranked in similar spots in the UFC’s welterweight division. That’s the fight that makes the most sense to me.