August 11, 2012; Denver, CO, USA; Benson Henderson poses for a picture after defeating Frankie Edgar (not pictured) during UFC 150 at the Pepsi Center. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-US PRESSWIRE
The UFC 150 card had it's share of controversy but it also brought some clarity to the lightweight division. The rest of the fights didn't mean much to the title pictures of their respective divisions, but most of them were still pretty entertaining overall. Where do these guys go from here though? Let's take a look at some possibilities for the next bout for the UFC 150 main card fighters.
Ben Henderson: It's pretty obvious what's next for the champ - 209. Dana White stated that Henderson vs. Nate Diaz would go down before the end of 2012 and Cesar Gracie recently stated that Diaz wants to return in December, so that leaves two options - UFC on Fox 5, or the year-end pay-per-view on December 29th. With Cain/JDS 2 penciled in as the main event of the December 29th PPV, will they go with two title fights? Or put this fight on Fox? I'd lean heavily towards PPV (I think it's absolutely crazy for business reasons to put another title fight on free TV), but either way, Bendo/Diaz is going to be awesome.
Frankie Edgar: Who knows. If he does make the decision to go down to 145, White stated that he'd have to fight someone before he got a title shot. Chad Mendes seems like the best guy to throw in there with Edgar if that's the case, especially considering Chan Sung Jung is out for the year with shoulder surgery. If Edgar stays at 155, it's tough to say who he'd fight. There's been talk about him fighting Eddie Alvarez when he/if he comes in, but they're trained together extensively in the past. Same with Jim Miller. Maybe Clay Guida?
Donald Cerrone: This one's easy - Cerrone is most assuredly fighting Anthony Pettis next. Dana White even responded to a yes or no question from Ariel Helwani saying that this would be a number one contenders matchup. Pettis has been granted title shots in the past that haven't come to fruition, so this might be his best chance. I absolutely love that fight.
Melvin Guillard. He's totally out of the title picture (assuming he was ever in it to begin with). He's tried new camps. He can't change divisions. What does Guillard do? Maybe you let him try to knock out Jacob Volkmann? Stick him in there with Edson Barboza? I'm not sure, but he's definitely been relegated to the "crowd pleasing but largely irrelevant" area of the division.
More after the jump.
Jake Shields: Blah blah, Jake's boring. We get it. He could still be a top middleweight though, so let's focus on that. Rousimar Palhares is a guy I'd really like to see him face, but I think they might just go with the obvious matchup coming off this card - Jake Shields vs. Yushin Okami in a rematch of their 2006 ROTR fight.
Buddy Roberts: That was way too much, too soon for Roberts. The bout with Chris Camozzi was the right fight, but it might not be now. Rafael Natal would be a good challenge and he is coming off a loss as well.
Justin Lawrence: He's got some unique stuff, but he was missing with a lot of strikes in that fight and isn't quite the highly-touted prospect he was given credit for coming in. Let him fight Daniel Pineda, that sounds like fun.