The UFC's second event in an eight-day span in now firmly behind us, and while it may not have been the most exciting of fight cards, it still featured a variety of exciting finishes from some of the winners.
Here are the fights to make after the TUF Nations Finale:
Tim Kennedy vs. Mousasi-Munoz winner
Tim Kennedy earned arguably the biggest win of his MMA career on Wednesday night, as he defeated No. 5 ranked Michael Bisping via unanimous decision in what many considered to be a lackluster main event. While the gameplan may not have been the most entertaining, it was certainly the smartest option for the American, who overwhelmed Bisping with a suffocating ground game that demoralized the Brit over the course of five rounds.
The former Strikeforce title contender is now 3-0 since joining the UFC roster and now holds a win over the No. 5 ranked middleweight, which should propel him into bigger fights in the future. An intriguing option for Kennedy would be the winner between Gegard Mousasi and Mark Munoz, who are set to headline the UFC's first fight card in Berlin.
Dustin Poirier and Akira Corissani deservedly won ‘Fight of the Night' honours for their fantastic 5+ minute battle, which saw both competitors gain opportunities to close out the fight. Ultimately, Poirier would prove his worth as an overwhelming favourite in the fight and finished Corissani early in the second round with a flush uppercut followed by a left hook to the body.
While it is generally frowned upon to match up a winning fighter with one coming off a loss, it would be in Poirier's favour to accept a fight against former title contender Ricardo Lamas. That fight was originally scheduled for UFC 143 but injuries nixed the bout and it never came to fruition. While Lamas is coming off a loss to featherweight kingpin Jose Aldo, he is still an elite competitor in the division and would boost Poirier's value as a contender.
KJ Noons vs Abel Trujillo
One of the more memorable moments that took place on the TUF Nations fight card was KJ Noons' brutal KO victory over local favorite Sam Stout. The knockout was so vicious that Stout did not even realize the fight had been stopped, so he proceeded to take down the referee and attempt a guillotine choke on him before tumbling over his stool.
It was a much-needed victory for Noons, who had recently snapped a three-fight losing streak with a decision victory over George Sotiropoulos and has now picked up consecutive victories for the first time since 2010. Considering his emphatic KO win will be etched into the minds of fans for the considerable future, a match-up against another exciting fighter in Abel Trujillo may be the right route to take with Noons.
Sarah Kaufman vs Tate-Carmouche winner
One of the more entertaining fights on the preliminary portion of the card was between Sarah Kaufman and Leslie Smith, as both fighters traded shots for the better part of three rounds. Smith proved to be a durable competitor but was thoroughly outclassed by the former Strikeforce women's bantamweight champ, who won a clear unanimous decision and her first official UFC win.
Kaufman's next opponent is an obvious choice. Since UFC President Dana White shot down a potential match-up with Cat Zingano, Kaufman should clearly meet the winner between Miesha Tate and Liz Carmouche, who collide this coming weekend at UFC on FOX 11. The winner of that fight will likely propel herself to the top of the contender's list.
Ryan Jimmo vs Fabio Maldonaldo
Canadian light-heavyweight Ryan Jimmo picked up another first-round knockout victory on Canadian soil, as he flattened Sean O'Connell with a ferocious punch before finishing him on the ground. The win alleviates Jimmo's fear of a two-fight losing streak and brought his UFC record to a reasonable 3-2.
Jimmo has had opportunities to prove himself to be a legitimate contender in the 205lb. division but failed to do so, as he would lose to both James Te-Huna and Jimi Manuwa. Considering O'Connell was a late replacement fight, it is unlikely that the win will elevate his staus much in the division. Next for the Canadian should be a match-up against Brazil's Fabio Maldonaldo, who is riding a three-fight winning streak dating back to mid-2013.