What’s next for Vicente Luque after UFC Vegas 51 loss?

This past Saturday in the main event of UFC Vegas 51, we saw a pivotal matchup in the welterweight division. The main event featured a rematch between top six contenders Vicente Luque (21-8-1) and Belal Muhammad (21-3, 1 NC).

These two men first fought back in 2016 at UFC 205. That night, Luque was able to get the better of Muhammad with a first round knockout. However, both men have progressed so much in the last six years that this promised to be a much different fight and it was.

From the opening bell, Luque was pressing forward while Muhammad was circling on the outside. Strikers will often pressure wrestlers to try and force the shots which usually makes it easier to defend. Combine that with Luque’s takedown defense and it was a good strategy.

However, that takedown defense wasn’t really on display at UFC Vegas 51. Throughout the fight, Muhammad was able to land takedowns and score points on Luque. There was really only one time where Luque had momentum by hurting Muhammad.

Outside of that one moment, the fight was controlled by Muhammad. In the end, all three judges gave the lopsided decision to Belal Muhammad at UFC Vegas 51.

What’s next after UFC Vegas 51?

The loss to Belal Muhammad was just Luque’s third loss in the last seven years. Every time he’s lost inside the octagon, he’s bounced back strong with a big winning streak and I wouldn’t put it past him to do it again.

That being said, it’s time to reset after his loss at UFC Vegas 51. With that in mind, what should be next for Vicente Luque? There are a couple of different avenues the UFC can pursue in terms of Luque’s next fight.

My favorite option would be a fight with Jorge Masvidal. It’s a fight that makes sense for both men and it would create a very entertaining scrap for the fans. That being said, Masvidal’s legal situation is up in the air after he punched Colby Covington outside of a Miami restaurant so we don’t know when he’ll be back.

Another option for Luque could be a fight with Sean Brady. Brady is in the top ten and he’s unbeaten. A fight with Luque would be a good test for him. One other option could be a rematch with Wonderboy Thompson with both men coming off losses to Belal Muhammad.

After big win at UFC Vegas 51, what’s next for Belal Muhammad?

This past Saturday in the main event of UFC Vegas 51, we saw a battle between two of the best welterweights in the world. Sixth ranked Belal Muhammad (21-3, 1 NC) was looking to avenge a loss against fifth ranked Vicente Luque (21-8-1).

Both men were looking to take another step towards a UFC title shot on Saturday night. When they first fought back in 2016, Vicente Luque was able to score a first round knockout. However, it was evident from the opening bell that this was not the same Belal Muhammad that lost six years ago.

Luque opened the first round well with decent pressure and looked to work the jab. However, it was Belal Muhammad who was being more effective with his footwork on the outside and was doing a decent job of landing shots.

Then, Muhammad was able to land the takedown which was a story of the fight. In the majority of rounds at UFC Vegas 51, Muhammad was able to get Luque to the mat which is something previous opponents have struggled with.

Luque tried to come on strong in the final round, but Muhammad was holding his own in the striking. In fact, you could say he was even getting the better of the exchanges. In the end, all three judges awarded the decision win to Belal Muhammad at UFC Vegas 51.

What’s next after UFC Vegas 51?

This was a massive win for Belal Muhammad who moved to 7-0, 1 NC in his last eight fights. The lone no contest came against top contender Leon Edwards when Muhammad was accidentally poked in the eye in their main event fight.

Without a doubt, this was the biggest win of Muhammad’s UFC career. After the fight was over, there was one name on the mind of Muhammad. That name was former interim welterweight champion Colby Covington.

While that’s the fight Muhammad wants, I’m not sure that’s the fight the UFC will give him. The current plan if all goes well is to have Covington face off with Khamzat Chimaev in a title eliminator. Leon Edwards is going to be fighting Kamaru Usman for the title sometime this summer.

With that, everyone but one man is booked in front of Muhammad. That one man is former title challenger and best friend to Vicente Luque, Gilbert Burns. Burns just fought Chimaev at UFC 273 and lost a very close decision.

Some believe that Burns won the fight and his stock didn’t take a single hit. To me, this is the perfect fight for Belal Muhammad and I think it’s the fight that will get booked next.

UFC Vegas 51 Preview: Belal Muhammad – Vicente Luque 2

Tomorrow night in the headliner of UFC Vegas 51, we will see a pivotal battle in the welterweight division. Top five contenders will battle it out in a rematch as Belal Muhammad (20-3, 1 NC) takes on Vicente Luque (21-7-1).

As mentioned, this is the second time these two have fought. The first time came all the way back at UFC 205 in 2016 when Vicente Luque was able to crack Muhammad with a huge left and go on to get the TKO win.

Since then, both men have been sensational. In 12 fights since that loss, Belal Muhammad has gone 10-1-1 in the UFC. Luque on the other hand has gone 10-2 in exactly 12 fights since their first encounter. They’ve shared a lot of common opponents as well.

Luque will enter UFC Vegas 51 riding a four-fight winning streak. He’s finished all four of those opponents as well included back-to-back first round finishes. Muhammad has won two fights in a row leading to UFC Vegas 51 including dominating former title challenger Wonderboy Thompson

UFC Vegas 51 Prediction

Since their first fight, Belal Muhammad has done a really good job of making himself more well-rounded. In their first fight, his striking was not very good. However, he can hold his own on his feet and he might have some success at UFC Vegas 51.

However, don’t get it twisted, the game plans are clear here. For Muhammad, he needs to use his wrestling and get the fight to the ground. For Luque, he needs to keep the fight at range so he can pick Muhammad apart.

If the same Belal Muhammad shows up that fought Wonderboy, Luque might be in some trouble. Muhammad was suffocating that night and didn’t allow Wonderboy any space to operate. However, can he have the sustained success over five rounds against Luque.

We’ve seen solid cardio from Luque and he’s going to need it at UFC Vegas 51. Unlike their first fight, I don’t see this one ending early. I see them fighting from range and I also see a lot of grappling.

I’m going to say that Luque’s cardio holds up and he does better and better at defending takedowns in the later rounds. He’s going to land something big in the fourth round and I think he gets a late finish.

Prediction: Vicente Luque by TKO – Round 4

UFC books heavyweight matchup between Devin Clark and William Knight

The UFC has finalized a unique heavyweight matchup for a Fight Night in May. MMA Junkie was the first to report last night that the promotion had finalized a matchup between “Brown Bear” Devin Clark (12-6) and William Knight (11-3).

The matchup will take place at UFC Vegas 51 which goes down in a couple of weeks on April 16th. What’s interesting about this matchup is the weight class that it’s taking place at. The two men will compete at heavyweight.

Both are light heavyweight fighters, but William Knight badly missed weight his last time out. This is likely one of the reasons that the UFC decided to have him fight at heavyweight but it’s interesting that Clark took the fight.

Knight came onto the UFC scene when he earned a contract on The Contender Series back in 2020. Since making his octagon debut, he’s gone 3-2. The last time we saw him was against Masx Grishin at UFC 271 where he lost by unanimous decision.

UFC Return for Brown Bear

UFC Vegas 51 will be the first time we’ve seen Devin Clark since his fight with Ion Cutelaba that took place last September. In a brutal fight, Clark lost a lopsided decision which was his second straight loss inside the octagon.

Prior to that loss, he was submitted by former title challenger Anthony Smith. Clark made his UFC debut when he was a perfect 5-0 yet he’s gone just 7-6 inside the octagon. While it’s not the most impressive record, it’s important to remember the competition.

Five of Clark’s UFC losses have come against Jan Blachowicz, Aleksandar Rakic, Ryan Spann, Ion Cutelaba, and Anthony Smith. He’s not losing to just average light heavyweights. He’s only struggled against some of the best in the world.

His last win came nearly two years ago when he defeated Alonzo Menifield. You can imagine that Clark is anxious to get his hand raised at UFC Vegas 51. This is an interesting one, but it should be a good one in a couple of weeks.