Five Fights To Make In The UFC Heavyweight Division

Five Fights To Make In The UFC Heavyweight Division

By Evan Montgomery
Saturday, July 23rd 2022, 7:33PM, 18 days ago

The UFC touched down in London for the second time in 2022, delivering a high-paced Fight Night card. In the main event, Curtis Blaydes came away with the TKO victory after Apinall suffered a knee injury in the opening seconds.

The Heavyweight division is fairly laid out right now outside of the title picture. Next week, #5-ranked Derrick Lewis will take on the rising Sergey Pavlovich. In August, #10 Marcin Tybura meets #13 Alexandr Romanov, while Augusto Sakai looks to defend his #14 ranking against Sergey Spivak. The top five meets in Paris on September 3rd when #1 contender Ciryl Gane faces fan favorite and #3-ranked Tai Tuivasa.

Champion Francis Ngannou is currently out dealing with a knee injury, and though there were talks of an interim title bout between Stipe Miocic and Jon Jones, nothing has materialized yet. There are still plenty of hot matchups to book at 265 pounds after the wild London event with a contender looking to get back to the title.

Curtis Blaydes vs. Winner of Lewis/Pavlovich

Although it was not the decisive victory he was looking for, Curtis Blaydes still got his hand raised in London. He is seated at #4 in the division and will likely hold that ranking come Monday. He is now on a three-fight win streak, but will need to string together another win or two to get back into the title picture. Up next should be a clash with the winner of the upcoming fight between Derrick Lewis and Sergei Pavlovich. The pair are set to fight next weekend at UFC 277 and either one could be seated just outside the top five with a win. In addition,Pavlovich has not fought Blaydes before, prompting an intruiging stylistic battle.

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Tom Aspinall vs. Jairzinho Rozenstruik

The main event could not have gone worse for Tom Aspinall, who hardly had any time to fight before suffering the injury. He will likely be out for some time recuperating, though the next few days will give us more information. Upon his return, I like a bout with Jairzinho Rozenstruik. Rozenstruik is ranked at #8 and coming off two losses, recently suffering a knockout defeat to Alexander Volkov. Aspinall will need to regain some of the hype surrounding him, while Rozenstruik is looking to get back on the winning track.

Alexander Volkov vs. Loser of Gane/Tuivasa

Alexander Volkov rebounded from his loss to Tom Aspinall with a knockout over Jairzinho Rozenstruik. Seated at #5, he is just outside the top of the pack. Ciryl Gane and Tai Tuivasa are slated to meet in September with the winner likely moving towards a title bout. The loser will need to get back to the grindstone and defend their position. Volkov remains a top-ranked opponent with elite striking, making a tough challenge for whoever loses in Paris.

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Chris Daukaus vs. Winner of Tybura/Romanov

Chris Daukaus surged into the Heavyweight rankings with a string of knockout victories. He then suffered knockout defeats to Derrick Lewis and Curtis Blaydes, now finding himself ranked at #9. He needs a win to defend his place in the top 10, and I like a match with the winner of Marcin Tybura and Alexandr Romanov. The pair are set to face off in August, with the #10 ranking on the line for the winner.The winner will deserve a chance to move up, while Daukaus desperately needs to get back on the right track.

Blagoy Ivanov vs. Andrei Arlovski

Blagoy Ivanov got back in the win column in May with a decision vic tory over Marcos Rogerio de Lima. Currently seated at #15, he will need to turn away a rising name to recreate a win streak. Although a long-time veteran, Andrei Arlovski has been on a tear as of late. He is currently riding a four-fight win streak and holds six wins in his last seven fights. Arlovski deserves a shot to get a number next to his name once again, while Ivanov needs to prove he deserves his spot in the top 15.

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