Five potential bouts coming out of UFC on Versus 3
Diego Sanchez vs. Martin Kampmann: When you’ve got a fight as close as this one – and with a controversial decision – it makes sense to run it back out there. Personally, I scored the fight 29-28 for Sanchez, but any decision made in this fight would have been acceptable. Sanchez was aggressive and seemingly landed the bigger shots, but Kampmann’s counter-punching was a thing of beauty. A rematch could potentially settle the controversy, and you’re almost guaranteed an exciting fight. It’s a win-win situation, but given that Dana White agreed with the decision, it’s not likely we’ll see it any time soon.
Mark Munoz vs. Michael Bisping: If you don’t want to reward Bisping’s boorish behavior at UFC 127 by giving him a top contender like Chael Sonnen, I think Munoz would make a great opponent. He’s rapidly developing a nice power striking game and his wrestling could give the Brit some serious trouble. If you want Munoz to take the next step up the ladder, he needs to face someone who can put him there, and Bisping is an obvious choice.
Brian Bowles vs. Joseph Benavidez: Benavidez has to get past Ian Loveland at UFC 128, of course, but I suspect he will. Bowles and Benavidez are near the top of the division, but with Dominick Cruz and Urijah Faber potentially tying up the belt until later this year with a coaching gig on The Ultimate Fighter 14, both of these guys have few options for facing top competition. It makes perfect sense to match them up against each other, and it would serve as a title eliminator of sorts. It would also be one hell of a fight.
Chris Weidman vs. Rousimar Palhares: Weidman’s wrestling against Palahares’ grappling would add lots of intrigue to this one. Weidman is far more composed than a guy with five fights should logically be, and matching him up with a jiu-jitsu master like Palhares – who scored a submission win of his own on the preliminary card – would give us a sense of just how good he is. At the very least, he might not give up an easy kneebar like so many of Palhares’ other opponents.
Shane Roller vs. Donald Cerrone: Both of these former WEC lightweights won their UFC debuts; Cerrone submitted Paul Kelly last month and Roller knocked Thiago Tavares into Never-Never Land on the Versus card. Roller has the submission chops to match Cerrone, and both guys are great at delivering exciting fights. Pair them up and see which WEC lightweight breaks through to the next level of the UFC ranks.