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Monday Morning Hangover: What’s next for Kelvin Gastelum after getting choked out by Chris Weidman?

Esther Lin/MMA Fighting

Another weekend of fisticuffs has come and gone as UFC on FOX 25 blew the roof off Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum last Saturday night (July 22, 2017) in Uniondale, New York.

For play-by-play coverage and full results for UFC on FOX 25 click here.

Plenty of fighters were left licking their wounds, including Dennis Bermudez, who suffered his second straight loss after coming up on the wrong end of a split-decision loss to Darren Elkins (see it again here).

And Gian Villante, who also didn’t do enough in the eyes of the judges to earn a win in his own backyard after a bloody war against Patrick Cummins (recap here). But which fighter is suffering from the worst post-fight hangover, now 48 hours removed from the show?

Kelvin Gastelum.

The former Ultimate Fighter (TUF) 17 winner was on a roll going into his fight against Chris Weidman, taking out the likes of Vitor Belfort, Johny Hendricks, and Tim Kennedy in his last three fights at 185 pounds. But once he stepped inside the cage against “All American,” Kelvin quickly felt what it was like to take on a much bigger Middleweight.

Weidman had his way with Kelvin, taking him down at will, manhandling and tossing him around whenever he pleased. The size difference simply couldn’t be ignored. That said, Kelvin hung tough, even knocking down “All American” with a sneaky left hand that floored the former 185-pound champion with only seconds remaining in the opening round.

But once they got tangled up in a grappling match, it was all Chris, who eventually sunk an fight-ending arm triangle to end the bout in the third round of their five-round scrap (see it again here). Still, the loss isn’t exactly devastating for Gastelum, it just puts him in a confusing situation, as he isn’t ranked at Middleweight or Welterweight.

Does he continue to compete with the bigger boys of Middleweight? Or does he go back down to Welterweight where he won four in a row before running into Tyron Woodley?

For Gastelum, the choice is clear.

“I feel like 170 as my home. I feel like I need to reassess some things, change lifestyle up a little bit,“ he clarified during the post-fight presser. “I’m already planning on going to Vegas to the UFC Institute — they have great dietitians there I’m going to be working with, and strength and conditioning coaches I’m going to be working with. I think my next fight should be at 170. That’s what I’m going to push for,” he concluded.

With that out of the way, Kelvin will have plenty of challenges down at 170, which includes actually hitting the nail on the head when it comes to cutting weight after coming in heavy three times.

That said, I’m feeling a fight between Kelvin and Gunnar Nelson, next. “Gunni” is coming off a devastating knockout loss to Santiago Ponzinibbio just last week, so the two combatants should be ready for a return around the same time. A win for either man would be a good way to get back into contention.

Any opposition?

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