Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) staged UFC Vegas 9 last night (Sat., Sept. 5, 2020) inside UFC APEX in Las Vegas, Nevada, which ended up only having seven fights on the slate after several fights were canceled as a result of COVID-19 (details here). In the main event, Alistair Overeem knocked out Augusto Sakai in the fifth round (see it) to earn his second straight win. In the co-headlining act, Ovince Saint Preux got back in the win column after knocking out Alonzo Menifield with a vicious hook (see it here).
Winner: Alistair Overeem
Who He Should Face Next: Derrick Lewis vs Curtis Blaydes winner
Business in the Heavyweight division is starting to pick up. Stipe Miocic is in line to rematch Francis Ngannou later this year, while the weight class will get a bit more interesting with the addition of Jon Jones in 2021. Also, a much anticipated showdown between Derrick Lewis and Curtis Blaydes will finally go down on Nov. 28, 2020. But since “Bones” will likely get the winner of Miocic vs. Ngannou 2, the winner of Blaydes vs. Lewis will likely need one more win to punch his ticket to the big dance. That’s why he will likely end up facing “The Reem.” Blaydes already has a win over Overeem in 2018, but if it’s a title eliminator fight, I doubt “Razor” would have issues signing on the dotted line. Also, Lewis and Overeem have a bit of a rivalry going, so that fight will sell itself.
Winner: Ovince Saint Preux
Who He Should Face Next: Winner of Mauricio Rua and Paul Craig
Saint Preux picked up a nice win by knocking out Alonzo Menifield, giving him his first win in the division in a year. “OSP” seems to always be that guy who just can't put together the tools he obviously has to make a title run. Hopefully, he can use his win as a catapult to push forward. Currently unranked at the moment, Saint Preux could be matched up with the winner of Rua and Craig, who are ranked No. 13 and No. 15, respectively. And since “Shogun” and “Bear Jew” are at the bottom of the rankings, fighting the winner makes sense for “OSP.” Yes, Saint Preux has a knockout win over Rua, but it happened in less than 40 seconds so I definitely would want to see more of them in the cage together. At this point in his career, "OSP" isn't in a position to be turning down anything. Neither is Rua ... or Craig.
Winner: Michel Pereira
Who He Should Face Next: Anthony Pettis
Pereira got back in the win column after choking out Zelim Imadaev, snapping his two-fight losing streak in the process. The summersaulting wild man is fighting in the Welterweight division, which means he has a ton of ground to make up before he can even get close to sniffing a spot in the Top 15. Call me crazy, but I would love to see a fight between him and Pettis. Both men are as flashy as they come with their striking inside the Octagon, and both men deliver. “Showtime” recently got back in the win column himself after defeating Donald Cerrone at UFC 249 last May, so his comeback should be right around the corner. While it may be a task to convince the former Lightweight champion to sign on for the high-risk, so-so reward bout, it could pay off for both men in the end, both as a rankings boost and possible $50,000 bonuses.
Winner: Andre Muniz
Who He Should Face Next: Impa Kasanganay
Muniz picked up his second straight win inside the Octagon, improving his win streak to six after submitting Bartosz Fabinski in the very first round via armbar. Like Muniz, Kasanganay is also a product of “Contender Series,” making good on his UFC debut just last week after defeating Maki Pitolo. While both men are young in their respective UFC careers, their paths are bound to cross sometime, so it may as well be now since they don’t have enough fights amongst them to be eying Top 15-ranked opponents just yet.
For complete UFC Vegas 9 results and coverage click here.