With a knockout win over Tim Boetsch at UFC 155, surging middleweight Costa Philippou made it clear he is a serious contender at 185 pounds.
The win was his fifth straight, and first over a serious divisional title player.
Philippou spoke with MMA Weekly about his recent victory, and about his plans moving forward in the middleweight division.
It’s huge. Beating a top five UFC fighter [Boetsch] with four straight victories, and not very many people go four straight wins in a row. I have to say [I'm] one of the few guys that [has won] five in a row right now, and not many people can say that in the UFC in any weight class. I’m on top of the world right now.
But feeling like he is on top of the world doesn't necessarily mean Philippou is at the top of the UFC's packed 185-pound division. Indeed, he knows greater challenges bar the path of his continued ascendancy.
And though he isn't looking to return to the Octagon until "around June, if they're [the UFC] is okay with that," Philippou already has some ideas about who his next opponent should be. Namely, the winner of Brian Stann vs. Wanderlei Silva, a contest booked for March 3, at UFC on Fuel TV 8.
"I'm definitely looking at the Brian Stann/Wanderlei Silva fight," notes Philippou. "Brian Stann would be a great match-up for me, Wanderlei Silva, if he decides not to retire, I think would be able to put on a great fight."
Philippou goes on to add that "It would be an honor to be in the cage with either of them," so he isn't making a prediction or stating a preference. He just wants the winner.
What do you think? Are Stann and Silva viable options for the owner of a five-fight win streak? Or should the UFC look elsewhere for Philippou's next opponent?