UFC 149 Results: 5 Fights for Brian Ebersole to Take at Lightweight

Andrew Saunders@SaundersMMACorrespondent IIJuly 23, 2012

UFC 149 Results: 5 Fights for Brian Ebersole to Take at Lightweight

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    At UFC 149, Brian Ebersole took a short-notice fight against James Head in the welterweight division. Shortly before accepting the bout, Ebersole had announced a planned move to the lightweight division, where the 31-year-old thought his body was better suited.

    Immediately after the contest with Head, Ebersole was shown on camera talking through the cage to Joe Rogan, who asked if the "Bad Boy" was still planning on moving to 155. Ebersole confirmed that his intentions had not changed, and threw in "these guys are big!"

    Maybe Ebersole predicted the wrestling troubles that were in his future. Unable to work his opponent to the canvas, the new-lightweight failed on 14 takedown attempts.

    The loss to Head snapped an 11-fight winning streak, which included four victories inside the Octagon. 

    Here is a look at five fights that we think Brian Ebersole should take in his new weight class of 155 pounds.

Edson Barboza

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    Another fighter who just suffered his first UFC loss after building up an impressive amount of momentum is Edson Barboza. That momentum includes a January wheel-kick knockout of Terry Etim that was a final four nominee for the ESPY's Play of the Year award.

    Unfortunately, Barboza ran into Jamie Varner at UFC 146, and he upset the young Brazilian with strikes in the first round. 

    With both Barboza and Ebersole looking to get back on the winning side of things, this matchup makes sense.

TJ Grant

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    With a 2-0 record since dropping down from welterweight, TJ Grant also recognizes the benefits of moving down in weight class. With wins over Shane Roller and Carlo Prater, Grant has already done a nice job of carving out a place for himself in the division.

    Similar to recent Ebersole opponent T.J. Waldburger, Grant possesses a dangerous submission game, and he may look to be the first man to submit Ebersole in seven years.

    This is the fight that I think "Bad Boy" should take next. His submission defense should keep him safe in this contest, and this fight could go either way.

Gleison Tibau

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    Longtime UFC veteran Gleison Tibau has been on a roll as of late. Aside from a pair of bad decision losses, the only time Tibau has tasted defeat in his last ten bouts is a 2010 loss to Jim Miller.

    At UFC 148, Tibau was robbed of a decision win over undefeated Khabib Nurmagomedov in the preliminary portion of the event. Commentators Joe Rogan and Mike Goldberg were quick to question the decision, and rightfully so.

    Tibau has excellent takedowns and considerable power. Additionally, he is likely the largest lightweight on the roster. If Ebersole is leaving the welterweight division in order to get away from monsters that are too large, Joe Silva might offer Tibau as a way to show that 155 isn't necessarily a better place to be.

George Sotiropoulos

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    George Sotiropoulos and Brian Ebersole have more in common than you may think. Both fighters spent a considerable amount of time fighting in Australia. Both fighters made the drop to lightweight after starting their UFC careers in the welterweight division. Additionally, both fighters lost for the first time because they couldn't get their opponent to the ground, no matter how hard they tried.

    G-Sot was on a seven-fight winning streak in the UFC when he met Dennis Siver in Australia. The hometown crowd knew that George had a distinct advantage in the grappling department over the German kickboxer, and that working the fight to the ground was the key in earning a victory.

    Like Ebersole, Aussie George simply couldn't pull off his takedown to initiate his imposing submission game. The bout with Brian Ebersole would be intriguing, as the battle between George's subs and Brian's ground and pound could take this fight in many directions.

Clay Guida

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    People tend to overlook Ebersole's placement in the welterweight division. Compiling a 4-0 record inside the Octagon is no easy task, and the fact that record includes wins over Chris Lytle and Dennis Hallman speaks volumes about where "Bad Boy" was ranked.

    Clay Guida is sitting near the bottom of the top 10 in his division after dropping back to back losses to Gray Maynard and Benson Henderson. 

    Just like Ebersole, The Carpenter is hard to beat, and even harder to finish. This fight represents the most difficult fight that Joe Silva might be willing to offer Ebersole in his divisional debut.