It seems that there wasn't a lot of initial interest in the latest UFC Fight Night event going into the show. But the Albuquerque card ended up being so strange that people seem to be more curious now. Fish hooking? Bad reffing? Worst decision ever? Greg Jackson thinks he's Russian? Henderson finished a fight? Yes, all that happened. So with that in mind, I'll attempt to predict the future for some of these guys. But I'm not going to lie - this won't be easy.
Ben Henderson - What do you do with a former champion that has fought nearly everyone at the top of the division but has two losses to the current champ? The only fight that seems reasonable right now is a scrap with Khabib Nurmagomedov. There's the storyline about Henderson finishing his countryman, and it'd be the biggest win of Khabib's career if he could pull it off. I'd go with that.
Rustam Khabilov - It's back to the drawing board for the Dagestani fighter. He was doing well and was ahead on two scorecards, but then it went off the rails. A solid next matchup might be the loser of the bout between Edson Barboza and Evan Dunham next month. Jim Miller would be interesting fight for Khabilov as well if he comes up short against Donald Cerrone in Atlantic City.
Diego Sanchez - Does the UFC even treat this like a win? Because it wasn't. He's asking for Nate Diaz in Mexico City but that seems a little far-fetched. I'd much rather see him face off with guys like Joe Lauzon or Jorge Masvidal. In fact, Masvidal-Sanchez sounds pretty awesome. Do that.
Ross Pearson - First, I really hope that Pearson gets his win bonus. Second, you'd have to think that his next bout will be in England. A Sanchez rematch is a possibility but we all know that he won anyway. I think the UFC will just treat it like a win and give him another tough fight next time out. I know Bobby Green is going through a lot right now but if he's interested in fighting any time soon, Pearson would be a good challenge for him.
John Dodson - Give this man another title shot. There's no reason to stick him in there with Joseph Benavidez or something - just let him have the winner of Demetrious Johnson vs. Ali Bagautinov. Easy.
John Moraga - So far Moraga has beaten the guys in the middle of the division and has been outclassed by the top-tier guys. The most logical opponent next would be John Lineker, if Lineker can make weight.
Rafael dos Anjos - That win doesn't do much for his ranking, but it was impressive nonetheless. He should go back to relevant fights in the division though. I think he should get the winner of the Josh Thomson vs. Michael Johnson bout at UFC on Fox 12.
Bryan Caraway - If he wants a step up, give him one. If Caraway can get through Iuri Alcantara, even the biggest haters will have trouble not taking him seriously in the bantamweight division.