When the UFC on Fox 3 airs tomorrow night, there are a lot of fighters who are fighting for more than just a win. Some fight for title shots. Some fight for contention. Others fight just to stay relevant.
In the middleweight division, Rousimar Palhares is looking to extend his recent record to 7-1 when he takes on Alan Belcher. He has torn through the lower-ranked fighters in the division and faltered when put against the elite. With previous losses to Nate Marquardt and Dan Henderson, a win for Palhares tomorrow will signal his first win over a legitimate contender.
Jim Miller is looking for the elusive title shot that appeared to be in his reach just one year ago. Miller was riding a seven-fight win streak when he faced Benson Henderson last summer. The now-champion dominated Miller and blew him off the path to gold. After defeating Melvin Guillard back in January, a win for Miller will show Joe Silva that he is still an elite member of the lightweight division.
Speaking of a title shot, welterweight Johny Hendricks is in the hunt for a crack at the 170-pound belt. After rattling off a 12-second knockout of perennial contender Jon Fitch, Hendricks will try to defeat another former title contender in the form of Josh Koscheck.
The hurdles that stand in his way are two previously announced fights: Georges St-Pierre vs. Carlos Condit for the UFC Welterweight Championship and Jake Ellenberger vs. Martin Kampmann, which has been pointed to as a No. 1 contenders bout. It's very possible that an intriguing outcome in either of those bouts could put Bigg Rigg out in the cold.
At the end of the day, though, main-eventer Nate Diaz has more to gain than anyone else on the card.
Dana White stated that a win for Diaz will secure him a shot at the UFC lightweight championship. With an August 11th fight between Frankie Edgar and champion Benson Henderson already on the docket at UFC 150, a win tomorrow night opens the door for Nate to challenge for the belt by the year's end. And unlike Hendricks, there are few human barriers along the way.
All of these fighters are featured on the main card of UFC on FOX 3, which airs tomorrow night at 8pm.