UFC Fight Night 26: What We Learned from Matt Brown vs. Mike Pyle

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UFC Fight Night 26: What We Learned from Matt Brown vs. Mike Pyle

Mike Pyle and Matt Brown met on the main card of UFC Fight Night 26, each fighter attempting to keep his improbable winning streak alive.

Brown, who appeared on the way out of the sport not long ago, had won five straight fights, while Pyle had won four in a row and seven of his last eight. 

But only one streak could continue, and after 29 seconds of fight time, Brown's was the one to survive. "The Immortal" put Pyle away in the early going with an onslaught of strikes on the feet before finishing with ground-and-pound.

Here's what we learned from the contest Saturday night in Boston.

 

What We Learned about Matt Brown

Maybe, just maybe, Brown is a legitimate top-10 welterweight. Maybe he's even a contender. 

Nicknamed "The Immortal," Brown has successfully revived his career with six straight victories. Now, none of those wins came against a top 170-pound fighter, but Brown is putting guys away and looking better every time he steps in the cage. 

Following the fight, Brown called out Georges St-Pierre, even suggesting that Mike Pyle was better than the welterweight champion. It's too early to give Brown a title shot, and he'll have to take out some true contenders before that happens. 

But Saturday night we learned that Brown is going to rag doll fighters outside the top 10 at welterweight. We also learned, more importantly, that it's time for "The Immortal" to be tested with a high-profile matchup. 

 

What We Learned about Mike Pyle

Pyle had won seven of his past eight contests but failed to make it even 30 seconds in the Octagon against Brown. 

"Quicksand" has always struggled in his efforts to make the leap up to the top 10 at welterweight, and he constantly seems to fall short of his huge potential. At UFC Fight Night 26, we learned that Pyle is probably never going to make that jump. 

Pyle is 37 years old, and he turns 38 next month. Time is not on his side, and the loss to Brown this weekend proved that his hopes of reaching the welterweight top 10, let alone fighting for a title, are all but gone. 

Look for him to continue on his quest up the ranks, and he should continue to beat mid- to lower-tier guys such as Josh Neer. But anything beyond that is going to be a stretch.

 

What's Next for Matt Brown

Brown, 32, called out GSP after the 29-second victory, but that isn't happening. Instead, he'll likely find himself matched up against a contender. 

We love a Brown vs. Robbie Lawler matchup, considering it is something of a dream fight for a Fox card. Another option would be Josh Koscheck, who is the No. 10-ranked welterweight at the moment and would serve as a gatekeeper to the top 170-pound fighters.

Yet another option would be Tarec Saffiedine, the final Strikeforce welterweight champion, who has yet to make his debut in the UFC, while former Strikeforce middleweight champion Jake Shields—though not in the top 10 at welterweight—is a big enough name.

 

What's Next for Mike Pyle

Pyle should expect his next fight to come against someone who is well outside the official rankings at welterweight. Bobby Voelker makes sense as an opponent, as Voelker did the UFC a favor by stepping in on late notice against Robbie Lawler back in late July. 

A few other options include Seth Baczynski, Tyron Woodley and Sean Pierson. 

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