After knockout loss at UFC Vegas 21, what’s next for Misha Cirkunov?

This past Saturday at UFC Vegas 21, we saw a matchup of top fifteen light heavyweights in the co-main event of the evening. Veteran, Misha Cirkunov (15-6), was taking on the rising contender, Ryan Spann (19-6).

Going into this matchup, I really liked Cirkunov’s chances. I figured we would see these two primarily exchange in a grappling affair. Considering the track record of both men, I figured we’d see the two wrestle early on in the fight.

However, both seemed content with standing early in the first. The one knock on Cirkunov is that he’s been finished a few times by strikes in the first round. He needed to get this fight into a grappling exchange early and he didn’t do that.

Spann was able to catch Cirkunov with a huge right hand that sat him down. Cirkunov was able to get up, however, he didn’t stay there for long. Spann followed up with some big shots to get the TKO victory at UFC Vegas 21.

What’s next after UFC Vegas 21?

This was a tough loss for Misha Cirkunov and a crucial one considering where he stands in the UFC. While Cirkunov remains in the top 15, he’s now just 2-4 in his last six fights inside the octagon.

It’s not just the four losses, but it’s four losses by first round knockout. That’s not a great look for a guy who was looked at as a potential UFC title challenger just a few years ago. In 2016, Cirkunov was 13-2 after defeating Nikita Krylov.

He looked like he was surging towards a title shot before hitting this rough patch. So what should the UFC do with him next? Personally, I think he should be matched up with the loser of the eventual matchup between Paul Craig (14-4-1) and Jamahal Hill (8-0, 1 NC).

Both of these guys rank just below Cirkunov in the UFC rankings. They were supposed to fight recently, however, Hill came down with COVID and the fight is being rescheduled. The winner should move up and the loser should take on Cirkunov next.

What’s next for Angela Hill after UFC Vegas 21?

This past Saturday at UFC Vegas 21, Angela Hill (13-9) returned to the octagon. She took on Ashley Yoder (8-7) in a rematch from their first fight a few years ago that Hill won. Originally, these two were supposed to fight a couple of weeks ago.

However, the day of the fight, Yoder had to pull out due to a positive COVID test in her camp. The UFC rescheduled the bout and the two ladies went to war on Saturday night. Hill was the big betting favorite and it was easy to see why as the fight played out.

Ashley Yoder is very tough and wouldn’t go away, but Saturday belonged to Angela Hill. Hill’s striking was incredibly crisp and her speed gave Yoder problems all night. I was extremely impressed with the body work by Angela Hill

Hill did a fantastic job of mixing up her punches and kicks to the body. At one point in the third round, she unleashed a barrage of six or seven hard knees to the body of Ashley Yoder. Yoder wouldn’t go away, but she had no answer. All three judges gave every round to Hill at UFC Vegas 21.

What’s next after UFC Vegas 21?

This win had to feel great for Angela Hill. Hill looked like she was marching towards the UFC’s top five of strawweight early on in 2020. However, she suffered two razor close split decision losses to Claudia Gadelha and Michelle Waterson.

Now that Hill is back in the win column, I believe it’s time for her to get someone inside the top ten. Hill was supposed to fight Tecia Torres (12-5) in a rematch back in December and that’s still a fight I like.

There is some bad blood there and it makes sense from a rankings perspective. However, if the UFC wants to go in a different route, I like Hill against Marina Rodriguez (13-1-2). This would be a very fun matchup and a win would get Hill close to the top five. Either option would be a good choice for Angela Hill’s next fight.

After big knockout at UFC Vegas 21, what’s next for Ryan Spann?

This past Saturday at UFC Vegas 21, there was a big matchup in the light heavyweight division in the co-main event. Rising contender, Ryan Spann (19-6), took on veteran Misha Cirkunov (15-6).

Going into Saturday night, I really liked Cirkunov’s chances. I believed we were going to see a grappling heavy fight and I believed that Cirkunov would have the big advantage. We’ve also seen Spann gas out which worried me in terms of his chances.

On the feet, I leaned a little towards Spann, but I didn’t think he’d be able to stop Cirkunov on the feet. However, I was dead wrong about that one. When the fight started, both men started exchanging on the feet.

The way the fight started certainly favored Spann. Spann said he wanted to be patient at UFC Vegas 21 considering all of the first round finishes that Cirkunov had. Well, just over a minute into the first round, Spann landed a massive right hand that put Cirkunov down.

Cirkunov bounced up, but Spann continued to hurt him on the feet. Eventually, Cirkunov collapsed and Spann followed up with a few shots before the referee stepped in. A massive win and arguably the biggest UFC win for Ryan Spann thus far.

What’s next after UFC Vegas 21?

UFC Vegas 21 was a beautiful bounce back fight for Ryan Spann. Spann was finished in his last fight by Johnny Walker. However, prior to him getting knocked out, he had hurt Johnny Walker. It was a back and forth battle that Walker ended up getting the better of.

Spann is now 5-1 in the UFC with the lone loss coming to Walker. With this win, Spann now sits at 11th in the light heavyweight division. So what should the promotion do with Spann after this big knockout win?

I think the next logical step for Spann would be to take on Nikita Krylov (27-8). Krylov is coming off of a loss, but he’s ranked ninth and he’s been in there with some of the best including Jan Blachowicz. A fight against Krylov would be a key test to see exactly where Spann is amongst the UFC’s elite light heavyweights.

What’s next for Leon Edwards after UFC Vegas 21?

Leon Edwards

This past Saturday at UFC Vegas 21, Leon Edwards (18-3, 1 NC) finally got his chance to return to the octagon. Edwards was riding an eight-fight win streak, but hadn’t been able to compete since July of 2019.

Originally, Edwards was supposed to take on Khamzat Chimaev. However, after Chimaev pulled out due to COVID complications, Belal Muhammad (18-3, 1 NC) stepped in. Muhammad had just fought and won at UFC 258 about a month ago.

This was a golden chance for Muhammad to prove that he belonged with the elites of the division. Meanwhile, Leon Edwards was out to show that he was still one of the best in the UFC despite the lengthy layoff.

Early on in the fight, Leon Edwards looked fantastic. His striking was incredibly crisp and he looked very sharp. His pressure was also bothering Belal Muhammad who is normally the one that pushes the pace in his fights.

In the second round, Edwards went to throw a kick and accidentally poked Muhammad in the eye. It was a horrible poke that caused the UFC Vegas 21 main event to be ruled a No Contest. So after that long layoff, Edwards’ return ends with a No Contest.

What’s next after UFC Vegas 21?

Despite Belal Muhammad wanting the rematch, I don’t believe that’s what the UFC will do. This matchup was one of circumstance due to Edwards needing an opponent with just about three weeks time.

Now that the fight is done, I believe the promotion will pair Edwards up with someone near the top. To me, there is one opponent that is perfect for Leon Edwards. That opponent is former UFC interim champion, Colby Covington (16-2).

Covington needs an opponent right now and it doesn’t appear that he’s getting the next UFC title shot. Edwards isn’t getting that shot either so why not pair them up. These guys are number one and three in the world and it makes all the sense that they fight each other next.

After huge knockout win at UFC Vegas 21, what’s next for Dan Ige?

This past Saturday at UFC Vegas 21, we got to see a big matchup in the featherweight division. Top ten contender, Dan Ige (15-3), was set to take on rising contender, Gavin Tucker (13-2). Tucker stepped in for Ryan Hall to take this matchup against Ige.

UFC Vegas 21 was looking like a big opportunity for Gavin Tucker. Originally, Ryan Hall was set to take on Dan Ige, but an injury to his hip forced him out. That’s when Tucker stepped in to take on the top ten featherweight.

With a win, Tucker would vault into the UFC rankings. Riding a three-fight win streak, Tucker was ready to play spoiler. However, Dan Ige was motivated to get back on track after having his six-fight win streak snapped in his last fight.

Ige took on Calvin Kattar during the promotion’s first trip to Fight Island in a headliner. Calvin Kattar proved to be too much for Ige and after the loss, Ige looked to reset. His wife is getting ready to have a baby so he was more motivated than ever heading into Saturday.

The fight promised to deliver a lot of action. Little did we know that the UFC Vegas 21 featherweight contest wouldn’t even last 30 seconds. Shortly after the fight started, Ige landed a blistering right hand that put Tucker out. A very quick night at the office for Dan Ige.

What’s next after UFC Vegas 21?

UFC Vegas 21 was huge for Dan Ige. It was what you look for when you put a top ten contender up against someone unranked. You look for the fighter to show why they are ranked in the top ten and that’s exactly what Dan Ige did.

As mentioned, Ige’s wife is getting ready to have a baby so he will take a little time off from training. Once he’s ready to get back into the swing of things, what should the UFC do in terms of the next opponent for Ige?

In looking at the rankings, I think a perfect opponent would be Chan Sung Jung (16-6). The Korean Zombie is coming off of a loss, but he’s a former UFC title challenger with a ton behind his name. This would be a great next step for Dan Ige and I think many fans would sign up to see this fight.

After UFC Vegas 21 No Contest, where does Belal Muhammad go from here?

This past Saturday at UFC Vegas 21, Belal Muhammad (18-3, 1 NC) finally got the shot he’s been asking for. Muhammad has felt disrespected by many in that he’s never in the conversation regarding future welterweight champions.

He’s been wanting a shot against some of the UFC‘s elite guys to prove that he belongs in that conversation. Well, after Khamzat Chimaev fell out a couple of weeks ago, top three ranked contender, Leon Edwards (18-3, 1 NC) needed a new opponent.

Immediately, Muhammad threw his name in for the UFC Vegas 21 headlining spot. This was his chance to prove that he belongs with the elites of the division. On Saturday night, he wanted to show the world that he could be a future champion in the welterweight division.

The first round started out pretty rough for Muhammad. Normally, he’s the guy who is pushing the action, however, it was Leon Edwards that had him backing up. Edwards landed a headkick that wobbled Muhammad badly in the first round.

Muhammad survived, but it was a rough round as he was outstruck by Edwards pretty clearly. In the second round, Muhammad was going to look to build some of his own momentum, however, the fight came to an abrupt halt.

Leon Edwards went for a body kick, but to give himself space, he had his hand out straight. One of his fingers went deep into the eye of Muhammad for an accidental eye poke. It was a bad one and it caused the UFC Vegas 21 main event to end in a no contest.

What’s next after UFC Vegas 21?

It’s clear that after UFC Vegas 21 that Belal Muhammad wants another crack at Leon Edwards. Their fight ended with no one getting their hand raised and it feels like there is unfinished business between the two men.

However, I don’t believe the promotion will head in this direction. Muhammad got this spot by circumstance and unfortunately for him, I don’t see the UFC rebooking this fight now. So with that, what’s next for Belal Muhammad.

I firmly believe that Muhammad should get a top ten opponent after this unfortunate turn of events. I think we should look at UFC 260 to find Muhammad’s next opponent. On the main card, Tyron Woodley and Vicente Luque are scheduled to fight.

I believe that a great fight for Muhammad would be the winner. Either he will get a rematch with Luque or he will get a shot at a former UFC champion. Both of these would be a great next fight for Belal Muhammad.

UFC Vegas 21 main event ends in a No Contest

Leon Edwards

In the main event of UFC Vegas 21 we saw a big time matchup in the welterweight division. One of the best welterweights in the world, Leon Edwards (18-3), was making his long anticipated return against the surging Belal Muhammad (18-3).

2020 didn’t go according to plan for Leon Edwards. Entering the year, Edwards appeared close to a UFC title shot having won eight fights in a row. He was scheduled to headline a fight night in March against former champion Tyron Woodley. However, the fight was scrapped due to the pandemic.

Edwards ended up not competing at all in 2020 after entering the year with such promise. He was looking to turn that bad fortune around tonight in his return. However, he wasn’t going to have an easy return taking on Belal Muhammad.

Just over a month ago at UFC 258, Belal Muhammad defeated Dhiego Lima. Muhammad made it clear that he felt he needed to be more respected in the division and he wanted some top ranked guys in his next fight.

After Khamzat Chimaev fell out of this main event slot against Leon Edwards, Muhammad jumped right in. Tonight, at UFC Vegas 21, Belal Muhammad had a golden chance to put his name directly in the title picture.

UFC Vegas 21 Recap

Round 1

There was no touch of the gloves to kick off the UFC Vegas 21 main event. Leon Edwards came forward immediately with pressure. Edwards opened the striking with a nice body kick. Muhammed tried throwing some hooks early, but was a bit out of range.

Edwards cracked Muhammad with a big 1-2 before he forced a clinch. Muhammad was able to reverse the position and landed a good elbow on the break. Edwards hurts Muhammad bad with a huge headkick.

Muhammad was wobbling around, but Edwards couldn’t put him away after Muhammad forced a clinch. The speed and length was really bothering Muhammad here in the first round.

A big body kick lands for Muhammad. Edwards answers with a big body kick of his own. Another nice 1-2 lands for Edwards and he follows it with another big straight left. The round comes to a close and it’s 1-0 Edwards at UFC Vegas 21.

Round 2

Normally Belal Muhammad is the one pressuring but early at UFC Vegas 21, Edwards was the one forcing the issue. Both men exchange jabs to start the striking in the second. Edwards goes for a body kick but accidentally pokes Belal Muhammad in the eye.

It’s a bad eye poke and this fight appears over. Referee Herb Dean waves the fight over after Muhammad cannot continue. The UFC Vegas 21 main event is going to end in a no contest.

Leon Edwards and Leon Edwards fight to a No Contest – Eye Poke (Round 2)

UFC Vegas 21 Preview: Manel Kape – Matheus Nicolau

Tomorrow night at UFC Vegas 21, we are going to see an entertaining scrap in the flyweight division. Former RIZIN champion, Manel Kape (15-5), gets a quick turnaround as he takes on the returning Matheus Nicolau (15-2-1).

Kape made his UFC debut just over a month ago against Alexandre Pantoja. There was a lot of hype surrounding Kape and people considered him to be a threat in the division. However, the first fight failed to live up to the hype.

Kape seemed extremely gun shy in the matchup against Pantoja. Now, I will say that Pantoja is one of the more dangerous fighters at 125. He has incredible power and he’s very good on the ground. For those reasons, Kape was extremely cautious which led to a lack of activity.

As a result, Kape lost his UFC debut. That loss snapped his three-fight win streak that brought him to the promotion. He stayed in Vegas after the loss and stayed ready for an opportunity and he got one.

Matheus Nicolau’s original opponent fell out and Kape stepped in for the challenge. Nicolau will be making his return to the UFC tomorrow night. In his first run, Nicolau went 3-1, then he was cut by the promotion.

He was cut during the same wave as Brandon Moreno when many thought the flyweight division was toast. Nicolau got two wins outside of the octagon and now the UFC has brought him back into the fold. He’s looking to make it three-straight wins tomorrow night.

UFC Vegas 21 Prediction

At UFC Vegas 21, I’m expecting more action from Manel Kape than we saw in his debut. Matheus Nicolau is not going to be the fighter who is going to be shooting for takedowns. But, his power is something to be cautious about.

I’m expecting this to be a war on the feet tomorrow night. Kape has incredible boxing and he’s very fast when he does throw his hands. He also possesses good kicks, however, he usually favors striking with his hands.

Nicolau also has very good striking. He also possesses incredible power with his hands and his kicks. One thing I like from Nicolau is his calf kicks which I think could play a huge factor if Kape is too heavy on that front foot tomorrow.

For my UFC Vegas 21 prediction, I’m going to lean towards Manel Kape to get it done. This fight is going to be incredibly entertaining, however, I like the speed of Kape and his striking defense. I also like that he’s been active and is fresh while this is Nicolau’s first fight since August of 2019.

Prediction: Manel Kape by Unanimous Decision

UFC Vegas 21 Preview: Angela Hill – Ashley Yoder

Tomorrow night at UFC Vegas 21 we will get to see a rematch in the women’s strawweight division. Top contender, Angela Hill (12-9) will try to make it two for two as she battles “The Spider Monkey” Ashley Yoder (8-6) for the second time.

Ashley Yoder has had a very up and down career so far in the UFC. The promotion signed her back in 2016 after she started her career at 5-1. However, she would go on to lose her first three fights in the octagon.

With her back against the cage, Yoder rattled off two consecutive wins before dropping two straight. In November, she snapped her latest losing streak with a win over Miranda Granger. This is a massive fight for Yoder who can secure her spot if she’s able to win tomorrow night.

That said, it’s not going to be easy. In June of 2019, Angela Hill lost a decision to Yan Xiaonan. After that fight, Hill really turned the corner in her UFC career. She won three straight fights, two by stoppage before taking on former title challenger, Claudia Gadelha.

Hill lost an extremely close split decision to Gadelha. Then, the UFC gave her a main event slot against Michelle Waterson and the two put on an absolute show. Again, Hill lost a razor close split decision. Had those decisions gone her way, Hill would be in the conversation for a shot at the UFC title.

UFC Vegas 21 Prediction

Originally, these two were supposed to fight a couple of weeks ago. However, Yoder had someone test positive for COVID in her camp and the rematch had to be moved back a couple of weeks to UFC Vegas 21.

Yoder is the massive betting underdog heading into tomorrow. For Ashley Yoder to win, she has to use her wrestling and try to make this fight dirty. She needs to try and force Hill against the cage and control her with her grappling.

We’ve seen Hill struggle with fighters who have a big strength advantage. However, I’m not sure Yoder has the strength and skill to keep Hill down or against the fence. At range, this fight is all Angela Hill.

While Ashley Yoder doesn’t have bad standup, I strongly favor Hill in the striking. You could make the argument that she’s one of the better strikers in the division. At the end of the day, Yoder is going to put up a tough fight, but Angela Hill is getting her hand raised at UFC Vegas 21.

UFC Vegas 21 Preview: Misha Cirkunov – Ryan Spann

In the co-main event at UFC Vegas 21, we will see a battle of top fifteen light heavyweights. Eleventh ranked Misha Cirkunov (15-5) will be taking on thirteenth ranked Ryan Spann (18-6) in the co-main event.

For Cirkunov, this will be his first fight in the octagon since September of 2019. These two were originally supposed to fight back in December, however, an injury to Cirkunov forced the fight back to UFC Vegas 21.

Since making his debut with the promotion back in 2015, Cirkunov has gone 6-3 inside the octagon and not a single fight has gone the distance. When he loses, we’ve seen him get finished via strikes in the first round.

However, when he wins, you see him show off his incredible grappling and submissions. Cirkunov is incredibly strong and has shown that inside the octagon. In his last UFC fight, he took out the talented Jimmy Crute in the first round by a Peruvian Necktie.

Standing across from Cirkunov at UFC Vegas 21 will be Ryan Spann. Spann is looking to bounce back after he suffered his first loss in the UFC. The first time we saw Ryan Spann around the octagon was on Dana White’s Contender Series in 2017.

That night, Spann was knocked out by Karl Roberson. After that, he won three straight to earn another shot on the Contender Series. He won that fight and won his first four in the UFC before getting stopped by Johnny Walker last September.

UFC Vegas 21 Prediction

When looking at the co-main event at UFC Vegas 21, I can’t help but think that this is a bad matchup for Ryan Spann. Spann has decent striking with decent power, but he does his best work on the mat.

However, his cardio is usually an issue and we have seen him struggle with guys who are better at grappling. I believe he’s going to be at a grappling disadvantage with Misha Cirkunov.

I’m expecting a lot of pressure early on from Cirkunov. I don’t expect Spann to have the power to keep Cirkunov off of him. I’m expecting this fight to be along the fence early in the first round.

From there, I see Cirkunov tiring out Spann before using his judo to get him down. Over the course of the fight, I just see the grappling and the strength of Cirkunov being too much for Spann. I think Spann can have moments of success, but I think his cardio ultimately fails him and Cirkunov gets the submission win at UFC Vegas 21.

Prediction: Misha Cirkunov by Submission (Rear-Naked Choke) – Round 2