Mixed martial arts (MMA) isn't supposed to be enjoyed in a gluttonous consumption, but at least we can play matchmaker now.
UFC Fight Night 41: "Mousasi vs. Munoz" took place at O2 World in Berlin, Germany this past Saturday (May 31, 2014) as observers from the western world dedicated their afternoon to the Fight Pass broadcast.
Also on the card, C.B. Dollaway beat Francis Carmont in the co-main event, drubbing the Frenchman for the course of three rounds.
When the fights in Berlin came to a close, the action continued on FOX Sports 1 (FS1) with UFC's The Ultimate Fighter (TUF): "Brazil 3" Finale, taking place inside Ginasio do Ibirapuera in Sao Paulo, Brazil.
Heavyweight contender Stipe Miocic beat habitual light heavyweight Fabio Maldonado in a relatively uncompetitive main event, knocking him out in just under 40 seconds and proving that sometimes, Goliath can still kick David's ass (highlights here).
Also picking up victories on the main card were Antonio Carlos Jr., Warlley Alves (TUF "Brazil 3's" heavyweight and middleweight winners, respectively) and Demian Maia, who snapped a two-fight losing skid.
It's time to match them up, and without further ado, here we go:
Winner: Demian Maia
Who He Should Fight Next: Winner of Kelvin Gastelum vs. Nicholas Musoke at UFC Fight Night 44
Why They Should Fight: You know exactly what to expect when Demian Maia competes. He's not exactly a marquee name, yet he's still a popular guy in many circles.
His fight against Alexander Yakovlev wasn't quite a reenactment of your favorite Quentin Tarantino movie. That said, when's the last time you saw the Brazilian drop someone in the first round?
Maia would have been a perfect opponent for the winner of Gunnar Nelson vs. Ryan LaFlare at UFC Fight Night 46 in Dublin, but since LaFlare suffered an injury and Zak Cummings will serve as his replacement, it's lost its touch.
The winner of Kelvin Gastelum vs. Nicholas Musoke (taking place at UFC Fight Night 44) is interesting for Maia, since the grappling exchanges against the undefeated TUF 17 winner could be somewhat unpredictable. Also, it would give us a chance to see if the Brazilian's striking has really improved greatly if he faces the Swede.
Winner: Stipe Miocic
Who He Should Fight Next: Junior dos Santos
Why They Should Fight: If it ain't broke, don't fix it ... right?
The American of Croatian descent was gearing up for the biggest fight of his life until dos Santos had to pull out of the fight with a hand injury. Still, there's a chance this match up can happen in the near future, provided "Cigano" avoids surgery or isn't on the shelf for too long.
Since Miocic is still sizzling, you can't let him get cold, either. If he has to wait multiple months for dos Santos to be cleared, there are other options that make sense, such as Travis Browne, Josh Barnett, or even Alistair Overeem.
Winner: C.B. Dollaway
Who He Should Fight Next: Yoel Romero
Why They Should Fight: This was proposed way back when Romero defeated Brad Tavares, and it seems like it makes a lot more sense after watching Dollaway's performance in Germany.
TUF 7 finalist whipped "Limitless" with his wrestling, and he even got the better of him on the feet, too. Heck, had Dollaway used a little more finesse in the first round instead of using Brock Lesnar's masturbation punches when he had Carmont hurt, we would be quick to call him a knockout artist.
Hmm ... maybe not.
Anyhow, Dollaway vs. Romero could prove to be an excellent battle between two seasoned wrestlers, who would probably opt to contest their battle on the feet more so than not.
Winner: Gegard Mousasi
Who He Should Fight Next: Tim Kennedy
Why They Should Fight: Is Luke Rockhold more of an interesting option?
However, considering Rockhold has been picking up steam in the middleweight division, only losing to a testosterone replacement therapy (TRT)-fueled Vitor Belfort, he should be pitted against Ronaldo Souza. It makes sense for that match up to serve as a potential title eliminator bout if "The Phenom" fails to win against Chael Sonnen(or, their scrap could come after the Brazilian acquires a title shot).
Fans may not like the proposed Mousasi vs. Kennedy duel, but from a matchmaking perspective, it makes sense if you round up the future plans of the division. Both the Armenian and the army veteran need another big win to convince the brass they can contend for the gold, and considering the landscape of the 185-pound division is mapped out the way it is, it's a perfect opportunity for the brass to see which one of these combatants can climb the ranks by canceling out the other.
What do you think? If you've got a better match up, let us know in the comments below.