If you didn’t enjoy UFC 196, you’re either clueless to what MMA really is, or you are a Conor McGregor fanboy. Rising light-heavyweights Corey Anderson and Ilir Latifi came out victorious with convincing decision wins, Miesha Tate became the new Woman’s Bantamweights Champion, Amanda Nunes earned a win, and Northern Cal’s own Nate Diaz came out and dethroned the Irish king.
Featherweight champ and Ireland’s own Conor McGregor, and former UFC Women’s Bantamweight Champ Holly Holm showed great sportsmanship after suffering losses that will be tough to swallow. UFC 196’s cast was beyond amazing, there were some unexpected knockouts and some very technical submissions. All the fighters performed well and here is who I see them taking the cage with next.
#12 Corey Anderson vs #13 Ilir Latifi
Latifi is a perfect matchup for Anderson. Both guys are on 3-fight winning streaks, wins on Saturday night. Latifi is a heavy-handed beast and he showed his strength, grit, and ability to get a takedown with flare. Anderson has great takedown defense and is a well-rounded fighter. If these two end up facing each other I think Latifi will get the knockout victory.
#2 Holly Holm vs #3 Cat Zingano or #4 Amanda Nunes
Holly Holm just couldn’t escape the choke, but she went out like a true champ. Amanda Nunes vs Holly Holm is a great fight for a co-main event on any pay per view. If Cat Zingano fights anytime soon, I don’t think she should get a top 4 opponent because of being out for over a year. If Nunes and Holm do fight Holm will get an easy decision victory.
(C) Miesha Tate vs #1 Ronda Rousey 3 or #2 Holly Holm 2
Miesha was surprisingly victorious in her conquering of Holly Holm and the women’s bantamweight title. The only fight I see the UFC booking is a trilogy with Ronda Rousey. The reason I put Holly Holm on here is because Holly was beating Miesha until she got taken down and choked out. I see a Rousey vs Tate trilogy at UFC 201 or 202 if Ronda can’t be ready by UFC 200 in July.
(FTW-C) Conor McGregor vs #2 Frankie Edgar or #1 Jose Aldo 2
We all witnessed history as Conor was dethroned. Although he didn’t come out of UFC 196 victorious he was a great sport and took the loss like a true champion. If I’m the UFC’s matchmaker at UFC 200, I’m throwing Conor McGregor in with Frankie Edgar. Edgar is well deserving of a shot at Conor after 5 straight wins. Jose Aldo is also making a push for the rematch, but I think Aldo should fight Max Hollaway first. Although these two are said to be the only ones in the running for a McGregor title shot, I think ruling out Max Hollaway is unacceptable. After all, Max is the only person to ever go to a decision with Conor.
(LW #5) Nate Diaz vs (WW#1) Eddie Alvarez or (LW-C) Rafeal dos Anjos or (WW-C) Robbie Lawler
The UFC vet from Northern California Dethroned the Irish King’s run of 15 straight wins. Nate Diaz hit Conor McGregor with a straight left that hurt him, then McGregor shot in for a double on Diaz. After a few punches and a scramble, McGregor gave up his back and Diaz locked in the choke. The fight ended with a bloody Diaz getting his hand raised by Herb Dean. Diaz has shown no quit and an iron chin, never being knocked out cold. What’s next for Stockton’s own? In my opinion, I think a shot at a title is right, Eddie Alvarez and Nate Diaz have some beef. Dana White said Welterweight Champ Robbie Lawler might be next for Nate, considering he just looked great at 170 pounds on 11 days notice, and his brother Nick was victorious over Robbie. Overall, I think Nate should get another crack at Rafeal dos Anjos; after all, Conor was supposed to fight him to begin with.