UFC on Fuel TV 5 Results: What's Next for the Winners and Losers?
UFC on Fuel TV 5 concluded with a big TKO performance by Stefan Struve over Stipe Miocic.
The heavyweight main event puts Struve right in the thick of things in the division. The win gave the 24-year-old his fourth in a row and brings his UFC record to an impressive 9-3.
The 11-fight card from Nottingham was an exciting one. Only four fights went to the judge's scorecards.
Here is what's next for all of the evening's winners and losers.
Robbie Peralta Defeats Jason Young by KO
Loser: Jason Young
A good candidate for Young's next opponent would be Justin Lawrence. The Black House member is coming off a TKO loss to Max Holloway at UFC 150.
Both men like to strike and would put the winner back on the winning track. It would be an exciting fight to have on another Fuel or FX card down the road.
Winner: Robbie Peralta
Peralta remains unbeaten in his last 10 outings with the quick KO performance. His UFC record stands at 2-0, 1 NC. The no-contest is a result of having his win over Mackens Semerzier overturned due to an accidental headbutt.
With that type of performance in the shallow featherweight field, he should instantly shoot up to a contender's fight. Ricardo Lamas would be a good opponent to fill that need. Lamas is already near the top of the division after defeating Hatsu Hioki, and this fight could signal the next in line for a shot at the title.
Gunnar Nelson Defeats DaMarques Johnson Via Submission
Loser: DaMarques Johnson
Johnson was knocked out cold against Mike Swick in August and returned on short notice against Nelson where he came in overweight.
A long layoff should be what's next for Johnson.
Winner: Gunnar Nelson
Nelson remained undefeated with a quick and seamless performance over Johnson. The welterweight should probably not be thrown in to the deep end of the pool just yet.
Any of the UFC 152 welterweight victors would be a solid opponent for his next fight: Kyle Noke, Seth Baczynski, or Sean Pierson.
Brad Tavares Defeats Tom Watson by Unanimous Decision
Loser: Tom Watson
After a competitive fight with the youngster, a solid choice for his next opponent would be Ed Herman.
Herman is coming off of a decision loss to Jake Shields at UFC 150 and has the stylistic matchup to put on a great fight with Watson. Throwing that fight on free TV would be an excellent choice.
Winner: Brad Tavares
Tavares is still a young kid, and the UFC should bring him along slowly to foster his development. That would make Andrew Craig a good selection for his next opponent.
Craig had a comeback KO over Rafael Natal at UFC on Fuel: Munoz vs. Weidman in his last fight and was game throughout. Both 20-somethings could benefit from fighting one another in their next fight.
Akira Corassani Defeats Andy Ogle by Unanimous Decision
Loser: Andy Ogle
Ogle should probably open another card on Facebook against any other featherweight coming off a loss. There was nothing about the performance that should be rewarded.
Winner: Akira Corassani
The decision victory was a contentious one. And that says a lot by how bad Ogle looked. Even with the victory, Corassani did not make a statement to get a better fight in the division. A fight with Jimy Hettes makes a lot of sense.
Hettes has tremendous upside and is coming off a loss at UFC 152. Make Corassani prove himself and give Hettes a fight he can build himself on.
Jimi Manuwa Defeats Kyle Kingsbury by TKO
Loser: Kyle Kingsbury
For the second straight fight, he was on the receiving end of a lot of punishment. Kingsbury is due for a lengthy vacation.
Winner: Jimi Manuwa
It was an impressive debut for the powerful light heavyweight. However, he showed a need for much better takedown defense.
Ryan Jimmo would be a nice opponent for when he returns to the Octagon. Jimmo likes to strike but could also test Manuwa's grappling skills in a grinding fight. It is a good selection to see where both men are at in the division before thrusting in to a fight they are not ready for.
Che Mills Defeats Duane Ludwig by TKO (Injury)
Loser: Duane Ludwig
What's next is a trip to the doctor's office.
Winner: Che Mills
Mills looked impressive in the fight until the unfortunate injury. Much like Gunnar Nelson, any welterweight winner from UFC 152 would be a good opponent in his next outing. Mills will test anyone in the stand-up portion of their game.
John Hathaway Defeats John Maguire by Unanimous Decision
Loser: John Maguire
Maguire did not look awful in the fight, but he did not look that great either. He had a hard time getting inside of Hathaway and finding any success until late in the fight. With around a minute to go in the fight, he managed to get a takedown, but it was far too late to do anything with.
The list of options is long for Maguire. He could do battle with a debuting middleweight, someone coming off a loss, or even a lesser known 170-pounder coming off a win. His ground skills make for an interesting test for anyone in the division.
Winner: John Hathaway
Hathaway picked up his third consecutive victory but didn't look outstanding in the process. It was a very workmanlike performance.
It would be nice to see a fight between Hathaway and Mike Swick. Both men are on the cusp of moving to the upper echelon of the division and match up well physically.
Matt Wiman Defeats Paul Sass Via Submission
Loser: Paul Sass
The defeat was the first in Sass' career. Until that point he was looking very good in the fight.
Jamie Varner could be a prime candidate for his next outing. Where each man is strong, the other is weak. It would be a test to see who is able to take the fight where they are best. For Sass, that would be the ground.
Winner: Matt Wiman
Wiman has quietly won five of his last six outings in the lightweight division. It is time for a step up in competition.
A good fight to make would be Wiman versus Joe Lauzon. The two The Ultimate Fighter alums could duke it out and determine who moves up the ladder in the division and proves they are ready for that next step.
Brad Pickett Defeats Yves Jabouin by KO
Loser: Yves Jabouin
After a brutal KO, it would be nice to see Jabouin take extended time off. When he returns, there will be plenty of options on the table. Anyone coming off a loss would be fine.
Winner: Brad Pickett
The KO of the night performance puts Pickett right back in the thick of things in the division.
Brian Bowles has not been back in the Octagon since losing to Urijah Faber in late 2011, and a return bout against Pickett would make a lot of sense. The winner of the fight could make a case to challenge for the Interim Bantamweight Championship if Cruz is not back.
Dan Hardy Defeats Amir Sadollah by Unanimous Decision
Loser: Amir Sadollah
Sadollah looked decent in the first frame of the fight, but that changed in the final two rounds. A trip to the undercard against another lower ranked welterweight should be what's next.
An equally game fighter like Chris Clements would be a good choice for his next fight as long as it is nowhere near the main card.
Winner: Dan Hardy
"The Outlaw" gets his second consecutive victory and looked good in the process. Utilizing his wrestling attack shows that the welterweight is working on becoming a complete mixed martial artist. However, he clearly needs a lot of work in that area.
And that is why his next fight should not be against a contender.
Another welterweight coming off two wins that would be a good decision? James Head.
Head is nowhere near the top of the division, and it would give him a chance to prove himself while Hardy can showcase his evolving game once again.
Stefan Struve Defeats Stipe Miocic by TKO
Loser: Stipe Miocic
This was the first blemish on Miocic's record. The Ohioan looked good in the first round but showed that he still has a lot of work to put in.
A KO loss will put him on the shelf for awhile, but that's OK. When he returns, he could fight the winner of Brendan Schaub and Lavar Johnson.
Winner: Stefan Struve
Struve is making his way up the ladder with his fourth consecutive victory, but the heavyweight title picture is currently clouded. Junior dos Santos will defend against Cain Velasquez soon, and Alistair Overeem and Daniel Cormier are waiting in the wings for their opportunity.
That gives Struve time to work on his game against other heavyweights just outside of the top ranked fighters. The best option for Struve would be a fight against Mark Hunt.
Hunt and Struve were originally slated to meet at UFC 146 but an injury forced Hunt off the card. The hard-hitting New Zealander will test Struve's striking, and Struve can test Hunt's grappling deficiencies. Re-making this fight would be the UFC's best option for both men and the division.