Four Matches to Make After UFC on Fox Sports 1:

Chael Sonnen vs. Vitor “The Phenom” Belfort

Despite Sonnen’s WWE-esque trashing of Wanderlei Silva in his post-fight interview as well as the eagerness from fans to see them throw down there is another matchup that makes a lot more sense here. As entertaining as Wanderlei is, outside of sporadic flashes of brilliance he is certainly not a relevant force in the title picture anymore and should Chael wish to continue his climb to another title shot the Belfort fight makes much more sense. Vitor is a strong contender for fighter of the year with two fantastic performances under his belt already and it is looking to only be a matter of time until he fights for UFC gold once more. As fun as the Silva fight would be a victory over Wanderlei right now, however dominant, would not boost Sonnen’s title aspirations anywhere near as much as a win over Vitor Belfort. Even putting aside what this bout would mean for the division it would be fascinating to see Sonnen try and use his strength and grappling to kill Belfort’s explosion.

Travis “Hapa” Browne vs. Fabricio Werdum

If there was any doubt to Travis Browne’s relevancy in the heavyweight division his knockout victory over Alistair Overeem should have answered all those questions. Browne showed great heart and resiliency against the fierce knees of “The Reem” and swiftly capitalised when his opponent slowed for a highlight reel finish. Werdum by comparison is himself coming off a very impressive submission victory over legend Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira in June and both fighters are sure to be hungrily awaiting the winner of Junior Dos Santos and Cain Velasquez’s third meeting in October. A fight between Werdum and Browne would not only help to increase the profile of either fighter’s title shot should they win impressively but would also prove an interesting matchup regardless as Browne would most certainly have to use his length to keep the Brazilian as far away as possible while Werdum would aggressively try to take the fight to the ground to use his phenomenal grappling skills.

Matt “The Immortal” Brown vs. Rory “Ares” Macdonald

Matt Brown’s career resurgence from struggling journeyman to fearsome knockout artist has been a joy to behold. Mike Pyle, much like others before him in the last two years was beaten down by Brown in yet another impressive showing from “The Immortal”. Rory Macdonald angered fans by taking a very “safe” approach to Jake Ellenberger against whom he had a significant reach and size advantage but Brown is both a very big welterweight and as tough as they come. Not only would this be perhaps the biggest test of Macdonald’s career but would also provide Brown a taste of the very Tristar gym fighting style he is guaranteed to come up against should he get his desired title shot against Georges St. Pierre anytime soon. Amusingly, this matchup was conceived back in 2010 presumably to prep a very green Macdonald against Brown who was apparently on a massive decline. What difference a few years can make.

Connor “The Notorious One” MacGregor vs. winner of Dustin Poirier vs. Erik Koch

Connor MacGregor should really be considered the star of UFC on Fox Sports 1. His charismatic manner outside of the cage and his dominant performance over Max Holloway endeared seemingly everyone to the 25 year old Irishman and it’s not hard to see why. What he needs now is a fight that, should he win in dominant fashion, cements his right to fight for the belt which at present is still based more on hype than actual in octagon performance. That’s not to take anything away from MacGregor, he has been nothing but impressive and after all such hype cannot exist without good reason. It’s just that some more proof would be nice and what better way to provide it than against the winner of a bout between two very exciting fighters?



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