Sit back, relax and grab a few beers for your afternoon because it's time to play fantasy matchmaker.
UFC Fight Night 40: "Brown vs. Silva" took place this past weekend (Sat., May 10, 2014) and despite initial complaints about the weak fight card, it was quite exciting to say the least (except for the event running longer than all three Lord of the Rings movies combined).
Matt Brown absolutely dismantled Erick Silva in the main event, crushing the Brazilian en route to a third-round victory (check out the highlights here). "The Immortal" makes a strong case for a title shot, but is he ready for a championship scrap or a title eliminator bout?
In the co-main event, Costas Philippou stopped Lorenz Larkin in the third round and salvaged his Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) future with a big knockout (highlights here).
Other main card winners include Daron Cruickshank, Neil Magny, Soa Palelei and Chris Cariaso, who all scored impressive wins over their respective opponents.
It's time to match them up, and without further ado, here we go:
Winner: Chris Cariaso
Who He Should Fight: Kyoji Horiguchi
Why They Should Fight: After suffering back-to-back defeats not too long ago, Chris Cariaso is quietly going about his business in the flyweight division. He derailed Louis Smolka and handed him his first defeat this weekend, and after examining "Kamikaze's" UFC tenure, it's safe to say his promotional record of 7-3 is satisfactory.
He could anticipate Kyoji Horiguchi, who competed on the "Prelims" earlier on the card in Cincinnati, with the Japanese standout making a strong case for contention after winning his last seven bouts at the tender age of 23 years old.
Winner: Soa Palelei
Who He Should Fight: Gabriel Gonzaga
Why They Should Fight: Palelei is no joke. He's won his last 11 fights by stoppage due to strikes, with only two of them exceeding the first round.
The heavyweight division could use a few more crops but until then, match ups are a little hard to come by.
UFC veteran Gabriel Gonzaga is coming off a loss to Stipe Miocic, in which we learned the Brazilian can't afford to get himself into a technical boxing match. He could still plant his feet and swing for the fences, so that could be pretty fun if he meets "The Hulk" in the near future. "Napao's" ground game can come into effect here, too.
Winner: Neil Magny
Who He Should Fight: Alex Garcia
Why They Should Fight: Magny is a tough scrap for anybody at welterweight and he proved that by beating Tim Means this past weekend. With all due respect to the Illinois native, he's not going to be a merchandise seller any time soon, but he's on a win streak and improved his promotional record of 3-2.
Alex Garcia has a lot of hype behind him, although the TriStar product still needs to put away opponents before pundits declare him as the next big thing.
"The Dominican Nightmare" has dynamite in his fists, but can he close the distance against the lanky Magny and get the better of his opponent who would have a reach advantage and a solid ground game, too?
Winner: Daron Cruickshank
Who He Should Fight: Winner of Edson Barboza vs. Evan Dunham at UFC Fight Night 45
Why They Should Fight: We always knew "The Detroit Superstar" could be someone significant in the lightweight division, since his fights are usually exciting.
With that being said, the way he took out Erik Koch was dazzling and he could only go up from here. It would be a little odd to match him up against either Edson Barboza or Evan Dunham, since he's on a little winning streak, yet we've seen worse and quite frankly, a lightweight scrap against either of those two combatants would be a joy to watch.
The stand-up battles against Barboza would be orgasmic and the grittiness of Dunham can't be overlooked, either. Both meetings would be a lot of fun.
Winner: Costas Philippou
Who He Should Fight: Winner of Mark Munoz vs. Gegard Mousasi at UFC Fight Night 41
Why They Should Fight: Philippou is back in the saddle again after finishing Larkin in one round and judging by the way things are going at middleweight right now, everyone is either busy or wants to fight Michael Bisping.
Mark Munoz is set to tangle against Gegard Mousasi in a couple of weeks and since both those fighters are sort of in the same boat as the slugger from Cyprus, it makes sense for the winner to meet UFC Fight Night 40's co-main event victor.
Both Munoz and Mousasi could provide tough challenges for Philippou, since their ground games are a few levels above the New Yorker's, but if the fight stays on the feet, we could be in for a striking treat.
Winner: Matt Brown
Who He Should Fight: Winner of Robbie Lawler vs. Jake Ellenberger at UFC 173
Why They Should Fight: It may not be a popular option, but hear me out.
Nostradumbass shed some light on the situation a few hours ago and I do like his matchmaking scenarios. I just feel like "The Immortal" is destined to meet the winner of Robbie Lawler vs. Jake Ellenberger because the organization would feel like he deserved the match up at this point. The winner of Tyron Woodley vs. Rory MacDonald will probably challenge Johny Hendricks once he returns from injury, Hector Lombard is calling out guys for easy fights, and Lawler or Ellenberger would not be far away from a title shot, yet it would be unjust to grant either of those men a championship bout after their duel.
Lombard is definitely a good option, but like our resident predictor suggested, someone like Dong Hyun Kim could be on the horizon for "Lightning."
You can do a number of things with the Ohio resident -- it's just a matter of which one makes the most sense for someone who's won seven fights in a row.
What do you think?
For complete UFC Fight Night 40: "Brown vs. Silva" coverage, including results, recaps, and video highlights, click here.