Erick Silva came up short at UFC Fight Night 40, but the Brazilian answered a lot of his critics with a Fight of the Night performance against Matt Brown.
Following his knockout loss to Dong Hyun Kim, Silva's chin was called into question. Those questions got their answer as Silva ate a treasure trove of offense from Brown and kept on coming. The Brazilian still has a long way to go, but this performance gave us a look into the heart of the fighter.
Following the loss, it will be interesting to see where the UFC goes with him. Will he face a relative unknown like he did after the loss to Kim, or will he meet another solid welterweight later this year?
Here is a look at three possible names for Silva when he returns to the cage.
This is the least likely bout to happen, but if the UFC wants to capitalize on Silva's performance at UFC Fight Night 40, the matchmakers should consider it.
LaFlare is ranked No. 15 in the UFC's official rankings, but most people don't know him. His style does not endear him to the fans. Silva will make him fight and find out just how much of a contender he actually is.
Silva vs. LaFlare is more about answering questions about LaFlare than Silva.
Another Top 15 loss would not hurt Silva as much following his latest setback, while a win would elevate him back into the mix as one of the hot fighters to watch in the division. It could be a win-win for the UFC.
Baczynski is coming off a loss just like Silva. They both need time to recover and can be slated against each other at a future UFC Brazil card.
Baczynski comes to fight, and that makes him an exciting opponent for Silva.
This will be a great rebound bout for one of the fighters, and the loser might get a pink slip from Joe Silva. It puts their backs against the wall, and that usually results in fighters taking more chances in the cage.
This could be an exciting bout for the UFC that puts the victor back on the winning track.
Following Silva's KO loss to Kim, Loughran was re-signed to the UFC to go opposite him. However, an injury forced him off the UFC Fight Night 36 card.
Now, Silva is right back where he was at that point. So why not rebook the fight?
This is the best plan for the UFC, if everyone is healthy. This would make Joe Silva's job easy since the UFC already booked the fight once before, and both fighters are in the same situation as they were in previously.