UFC 148 Results: What's Next for Chad Mendes?

Sal DeRose@@TheSalDeRoseCorrespondent IJuly 7, 2012

(Photo by Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)
(Photo by Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)

The first stoppage of the night at UFC 148 came at the hands of featherweight Chad Mendes.

It was surprising considering the fighters who stepped in before the featherweight, but an awesome finish nonetheless.

Mendes defeated Cody McKenzie after catching a kick followed up with a shot to the midsection and then a shot while McKenzie was falling.

Mendes took less than a minute to finish off McKenzie, who was making his featherweight debut.

This was the first fight back for Mendes, who lost earlier this year to current UFC featherweight champion Jose Aldo at UFC 142 in Brazil. Mendes lost by first-round knockout.

After that quick knockout, what could be next for the former featherweight contender?

Well, now seeing Hatsu Hioki lose his last time out, is Mendes the second-best fighter at featherweight? 

Mendes will have some talking to do with Erik Koch or Chan Sung Jung about that idea. If the UFC does go forward with the Koch/Aldo title fight, then maybe Mendes should face Jung in the meantime as Jung is seemingly on the cusp of earning the shot at Aldo.

Seeing as Mendes didn't take long against McKenzie, the fight could go down sometime in the early fall and could be considered a No. 1 contenders fight.

Maybe the UFC feels Mendes needs to work a little more for his second shot at the title and instead of putting him forward with Jung, it could put pair him with Dustin Poirier who lost to Jung in his last fight. Poirier was real close to a title shot when he met Jung and is now looking to earn his way back to the title. A fight with Mendes would do both fighters well to earn themselves a shot at a No. 1 contenders fight.

We'll see whom Mendes gets matched up with next, and I'm very excited after seeing his great knockout of McKenzie tonight.