UFC 118 Aftermath: What's Next for the Winners?

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UFC 118 Aftermath: What's Next for the Winners?

On Sunday, I wrote about the questions UFC 118 raised.

Today, I want to examine what's next for the guys who took care of business in Boston.

Demien Maia won a unanimous decision over Mario Miranda on Saturday and has only lost to Nate Marquardt and Anderson Silva. He deserves a fight against another top 10 opponent at Middleweight. His stand up has improved a little bit, but I'd still like to see him fight another grappler as opposed to a brawler. Personally, I'd like to see him fight Chris Leben or Yushin Okami. 

Nate Diaz submitted Marcus Davis and looks like he's found a real home at Welterweight. Diaz poses an interesting matchup for a variety of different fighters at 170. This Gracie Black Belt in jiu-jitsu is tall with long arms and sports an infuriating and effective form of boxing. I'd like to see him in another standup war with either Dan Hardy or Thiago Alves (if he can make weight). 

Gray Maynard won a unanimous decision over Kenny Florian. Maynard looked huge and powerful. He doesn't seem to have the best finishing tools, but he's got great stamina, strength, and wrestling. I'd like to see him work on his positions and finishes on the ground. He's got a guaranteed title shot against Frankie Edgar. I think he's going to dominate Edgar for five rounds and take the Lightweight title.

Randy Couture choked out an obese James Toney in about two minutes. He's now on a UFC manufactured three fight win streak against Mark Coleman, Brandon Vera, and James Toney. There is talk of him getting a shot at a real contender and making a last possible run at the Light Heavyweight title. I think that's silly, but fans do love Couture and he probably has another huge PPV in him. Personally, I'd like to see him get thrown to the young Lion Jon Jones, but my guess is he will get a shot at the Rampage-Machida winner for a title shot.

Frankie Edgar dominated BJ Penn to retain the Lightweight Championship. Edgar now gets a chance to avenge the only loss of his career against "The Bully" Gray Maynard. I think the Gray Maynard-Frankie Edgar matchup mirrors the BJ Penn-Edgar matchup. Edgar is just too fast for BJ Penn. Maynard is too big and strong for Edgar. Unfortunately I think the Frankie Edgar Championship Era may already be over.

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