TUF 14 Finale: What's Next for the Main Card Fighters?
Michael Bisping and Jason Miller put a stamp on their intense season of the Ultimate Fighter on Saturday, and it would be Bisping who got the last say, as he was victorious over Miller in the main event.
Bisping had trouble early but eventually took over the fight when Miller began to gas in Round 2. The fight ended in the third after Bisping swarmed on Miller with punches and knees to his downed opponent.
Finalists Diego Brandao and John Dodson also picked up wins and six-figure contracts for defeating their opposition in exciting fashion.
Also on the card, Yves Edwards and Tony Ferguson fought in an anticipated lightweight matchup.
This is what's next for the winners and losers.
Winner: John Dodson
Before the UFC develops a flyweight division, John Dodson will have to fight for a spot at title contention in the bantamweight division.
His impressive first round knockout victory over T.J. Dillashaw won KO of the Night honors, and it was one of many finishes the the 27-year-old earned on the TUF season.
If Dodson wants to get back into action as soon as possible, he could take on Darren Uyenoyama, who just defeated Norifumi Yamamoto. If he plans on waiting, he can face the winner of the UFC 140 bantamweight bout between Yves Jabouin and Walel Watson.
Winner: Diego Brandao
Diego Brandao and Dennis Burmedez put on the best fight of the card after battling back-and-forth for five minutes until Brandao eventually sinked in a vicious armbar to win the featherweight contract.
Brandao survived being dropped, but Burmedez would be forced to tap to the submission nine seconds before the end of the round, giving Brandao his 14th career victory.
For Brandao's next fight, a bout versus the winner of the upcoming Ross Pearson and Junior Assuncao could be interesting. Pearson is a recent Ultimate Fighter winner and is moving down from lightweight. Assuncao is a WEC veteran.
Winner: Tony Ferguson
Tony Ferguson extended his overall record to 12-3 with his victory over Yves Edwards after three rounds of exciting lightweight action.
Now at 3-0 in the UFC, Ferguson can begin to make his way up in the stacked division, but it won't be easy. In many cases, lightweight contenders don't make it to the title until they have picked up three or four big-name wins, and Ferguson is still developing as a fighter.
He won't be ready for a top 10 fighter just yet, but a fight versus Gleison Tibau or the winner of the upcoming Terry Etim vs. Edson Barboza fight could be next.
Winner: Michael Bisping
Bisping might be the most underrated fighter in the sport, and while Miller wasn't the highest-ranked opponent he has faced, many were not picking him to win.
He proved the doubters wrong when he stopped Miller in the third round to get his fourth victory in a row. The others include those over Dan Miller, Yoshihiro Akiyama and Jorge Rivera.
Since the upcoming bout between Chael Sonnen and Mark Munoz will determine the next challenger for Anderson Silva, Bisping will have to fight the winner of Vitor Belfort vs. Anthony Johnson.
Loser: Jason Miller
Strikeforce veteran Jason Miller made his return to the big leagues for the first time since losing to Georges St-Pierre, but the loss now sets him back 0-2 in the UFC.
After surprisingly gassing early in the scheduled five-rounder versus Bisping, Miller showed that maybe he doesn't have what it takes to compete with the best of the best in the division just yet.
That's okay, though, because there are many opponents for him to face, including fighters like Cung Le or Aaron Simpson, who Miller was originally scheduled to take on in his comeback fight.