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Monday Morning Hangover: What’s next for Eddie Alvarez after title loss to Conor McGregor at UFC 205?

Esther Lin via MMA Fighting

Another weekend of fisticuffs has come and gone, as UFC 205 blew the roof off famed Madison Square Garden last Saturday night (Nov. 12, 2016) in New York City.

For complete results and play-by-play coverage of "Alvarez vs. McGregor" click here.

Plenty of fighters were left licking their wounds, including Chris Weidman, was was viciously knocked out by a flying knee courtesy of Yoel Romero (see it again here). And Karolina Kowalkiewicz, who came up short in her bid to dethrone Joanna Jedrzejczyk from the top of the women's strawweight mountain (video highlights here).

But which fighter is suffering from the worst post-fight hangover now 48 hours removed from the show?

Eddie Alvarez.

In what was his first-ever title defense of his lightweight strap, Alvarez was faced with the task of trying to hand Conor McGregor his second defeat inside the Octagon, preventing him from making history in the process. "The Underground King" wasn't too impressed with McGregor going into the fight, predicting that not only would he finish him, he'd expose him for not having the will of a champion.

Mission failed.

From the jump, Conor pounced on Alvarez, knocking him down three times in the first round, finding his range and connecting on pretty much any shot he threw. It all culminated with a second-round knockout victory for Conor (see it again here), forever etching him in the mixed martial arts (MMA) history books by become the fist person to ever hold two separate division titles at the same time.

While the future looks bright for "Notorious" on all fronts -- see why here and here -- it looks rather uncertain for the former division champion.

So where did it all go wrong for Alvarez? He breaks it down.

"His speed and timing were very good," he said after the loss. "I'm not quite sure [why I didn't stick to the gameplan] ... and it was foolish. That was not my intention going into the fight. It was stupid, it was foolish and I paid for not sticking to the gameplan. I fought a stupid fight, he continued. "It wasn't a good fight," admitted a dejected Alvarez.

The loss, while devastating, is only Eddie's second with the promotion, so he'll have plenty of time (and opportunities) to get back on track to perhaps reclaim his belt down the road. That said, McGregor is looking to take some time off, essentially holding both the 145- and 155-pound belts hostage.

As for what could be next for Alvarez, he could take on one of the top contenders at lightweight who are stamping their own invitation to the big dance. However, since there likely won't be a title fight in the division for quite some time, I'd like to see Alvarez face Nate Diaz next.

The two men have quite a bitter history, with the duo coming face-to-face at a UFC Mexico event last year. Plus, Alvarez took a shot at Nate when downplaying Conor's win over him earlier this year. And since Khabib Nurmagomedov and Tony Ferguson will likely get a shot at the strap before Eddie does, this lightweight scrap just feels right.

What say you?

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