The UFC has developed many interesting situations across all weight classes, and with these developments, I have had a lot of "Joe Silva moments" as i continue to create perfect match ups in my head. I will just go ahead and explain them.
The winner of Bader/Ortiz to fight the winner of Griffin/Rua:
Both of these fights will show who is successfully rebounding, and a win pushes the winner almost back into the mix. If Griffin beats Shogun he is one win away from being back in the "mix" and who better as a next opponent than Bader or Tito. If Rua wins this matchup, we can see a championship rematch in the relatively near future, that is if Jones remains on top. In Ryan Bader's situation, a win over Ortiz not only (most likely) retires the Huntington Beach Bad Boy, but shows resiliency and will remind everyone that he is a top tier 205 pounder. Either way, these four fighters are in relatively the same scenario, although Bader and Tito are coming off losses, and Griffin is coming off a win over Franklin, in relation to the Belt they are in the same vicinity.
Stann vs Noke:
Both of these middleweights are coming off at least two straight wins (3 for Noke), and they have both proved their stand up skills. Stann who in my opinion looked his best tonight at UFC 130 as he battered Jorge Santiago earning a fight of the night bonus. His new and improved physique, and his devastating punching power was accompanied by his tricky game plan which shifted from punishing the body (Leben), to working the viscous leg kicks. Kyle Noke's well rounded game creates a solid matchup for striker, Brian Stann. With Bisping vs. Miller recently announced as TUF coaches, the two are now out of commission but in theory would make a great matchup for Stann. If Stann wins a fight over Noke, he will most definitely be in title contention, and Noke can be thrusted right into the "mix" with a victory over the american war hero.
Winner of Guillard v Roller to face Jim Miller:
Melvin Guillard for much time has been one of the most dominant lightweights in the UFC, as he most recently displayed incredible strength and quickness in his dealing with Evan Dunham in fight for the troops. He has been given Shane Roller after this win, and not anything against Roller, but The Young Assassin deserves better. He is very GSPesque in his quick and powerful wrestling, and smooth hands. If he were to face Jim Miller, he would be tested not only on his feet, but most definitely on the ground, which is one area that he hasn't shown solid control, as all four of his losses in the UFC are from submission. Not only does this fight make sense for Guillard, but Miller is one of the most underrated fighters in the lightweight division. He is on a 7 fight win streak only losing his last fight to Gray Maynard. He has decisively beaten all of his last seven opponents, and never asks for a title shot, but is going to get one with the pace he is on. Seeing these two explosive 155ers clash will send a shot through the Lightweight division that cannot be ignored.
Both of these lightweight strikers have shown their dominance on their feet, and in his most recent victory over Bocek, Henderson is a scary opponent. He escaped a number of submissions (by a jiu jitsu expert), and was able to control the stand up game. Dennis Siver's kickboxing has taken the division by surprise, with his three fight win streak. A decorated striker such as Ben Henderson, who is as tough as any, finds a great matchup with a durable Siver. Both fighters are on their way to the top of the division, and a win over one another will push them even higher.
Michael McDonald vs. Dimetrius Johnson:
Both of these 135ers came out victorious on May 28th at UFC 130, and have proven they can hang with the quickest fighters in mma. Although Johnson was facing controversy after his decision win over Torres, i believe that with as many submission escapes, reversal sweeps, and takedowns that Johnson executed he earned the win. Johnson has proven to be a danger on his feet, and has lighting quickness that can only be compared to the best. Michael "Mayday" McDonald, coming off a fight of the night over Edwin Figueroa at UFC Fight Night 24, added another win to his resume with a split decision victory over Chris Cariaso. He demonstrated his smooth ground game, and his relentless stand up (much reminiscent of Rick Story), making him a force to be reckoned with. A win for either of these fighters will put them in title contention in a big way.
Story vs. winner of Condit v Kim:
As many might have counted "The Horror" out against the veteran Thiago Alves in the welterweight matchup at UFC 130, Rick Story fought an amazingly tough battle with the kick boxer. He pushed the pace in this fight, and wore a number of big shots by Alves, yet continued to control the octagon. A standup battle between Condit and Story is intriguing, and should Kim get through Carlos Condit, one would only assume the explosive wrestling to present itself in Rick Story. This young welterweight has shown his toughness and pure strength in his victory over "The Pitbull" tonight, and is a tough opponent for anyone in the welterweight division.