Will Kay Hansen stay at flyweight?
Kay Hansen dropped her UFC flyweight debut to Jasmine Jasudavicius via unanimous decision. Hansen, who had previously only fought at 115 pounds in the UFC, had a 2-1 career record at flyweight prior to UFC 270. The fight was the 12th of the pro career of the 22-year-old and third with the UFC.
Hansen is a talented fighter, who seems to hold something back inside the cage. She has skills, but she seems to lack the experience and reps that allow her to flow with a fight while it’s happening. She’s also had to deal with some very serious outside the cage issues. I think the move to 125 pounds was a smart one for Hansen and I hope the setback at UFC 270 doesn’t make her rethink her move to 125 pounds. With everything Hansen has to deal with in her life, a severe weight cut is not something she needs to deal with.
Who will Jack Della Maddalena face next?
When informing Jack Della Maddalena he had earned a UFC contract, UFC president Dana White said of the 25-year-old Australian, “He didn’t just show us a little of everything, he showed us a lot of everything. No matter where the fight went, this kid was really good. He’s got unbelievable head movement. Some of the transitions that happened on the ground were unbelievable. He can hit. He’s got a great chin. He’s got unbelievable stamina. he’s only 25 years old. The kid is 10-2. I expect big things from this kid.”
Della Maddalena looked impressive in his UFC debut, earning a first-found TKO win over Pete Rodriguez at UFC 270. The issue with the fight was that Rodriguez was not Della Maddalena’s original opponent, that was UFC vet, Warlley Alves, who dropped out of the fight in early January.
I expect the UFC to try to get a handle on just where Della Maddalena fits in the welterweight division with his next booking. Expect the matchmakers to give the young fighter a tough test in his next trip to the octagon.
How will Victor Henry approach his UFC career?
Victor Henry accepted his fight against Raoni Barcelos on short notice. The 34-year-old was the biggest underdog on the card. He ran through Barcelos, sweeping him on the cards with three scores of 30-27. Henry’s pressure, pace and output were too much for the Brazilian to handle.
The question now is how will Henry approach his UFC career, considering he didn’t get his chance with the promotion until he was closing in on his 35th birthday? I expect Henry to be aggressive in accepting fights that can hurry him up the bantamweight division, as he looked impressive at UFC 270 and has a lot of momentum on his side.
What is Michel Pereira upside/career path in the UFC?
It’s hard to believe, but Michel Pereira is actually a lot more controlled these days when he fights. With that being said, the wild welterweight still seems to be in a grey area where he is working through what his career trajectory is going to be. The 28-year-old is talented and could probably work his way up the 170-pound rankings with a more reserved style. However, Pereira, who is on a four-fight winning streak after his decision win over Andre Fialho at UFC 270, could also carve out a spot for himself as an entertainment first fighter.
Are we going to see four — and maybe five — fights between Deiveson Figueiredo and Brandon Moreno?
In the aftermath of his win over Brandon Moreno, Deiveson Figueiredo said he wanted to face Moreno for a fourth time. He added he wanted the fight to take place in Mexico. I’m all for that scenario playing out.
The downside is a fourth fight between the two top flyweights keeps the other 125-pounders from getting a shot at UFC gold.
The reality is the UFC nearly did away with the division a few years ago and a rivalry between two talented fighters might be too much for the UFC to resist.
What does the future hold for Ciryl Gane?
Ciryl Gane fought a Ciryl Gane fight at UFC 270. That is to say, he fought a tactical battle that some would call boring. He also struggled a great deal with the wrestling and ground game of a fighter in Francis Ngannou, who has never been known for his grappling skills. My feeling is that Gane is not an incredibly popular fighter with UFC president Dana White because of his style. With that, I think the UFC matchmakers are going to book the now former interim champ against fighters who can test his defensive wrestling skills. Don’t be surprised to see Gane matched against someone like Curtis Blaydes in his next outing.
Where was Dana White?
When a UFC title is on the line, UFC president Dana White is usually the person who enters the octagon to wrap the belt around the waist of the victorious fighter. White did his duty for the flyweight co-main event, draping the belt over the shoulder of the victorious Deiveson Figueiredo.
However, when the time came for the main event, the belt duties went to UFC matchmaker Mick Maynard. White was not in the octagon for the ceremony of giving Francis Ngannou his title. White was also missing from the post-fight press conference.
The question is then, where was White and why did he cut out of the event? Barring illness or a family emergency, White not performing two of his fight night duties was not a good look, considering all his issues with Ngannou.
Have we seen the last of Francis Ngannou in the UFC?
My opinion is that we have seen the last of Francis Ngannou in the UFC. Ngannou is contractually tied to the UFC for three fights or one year. The way Ngannou sees it, sitting out the year to get out of his UFC deal will not be a big deal for him.
“In the past three years, I have fought three times. So what does that mean? Once a year? It wouldn’t be something strange,” he said at the post-fight press conference.
The way I see it, the only way Ngannou signs a new deal with the UFC is if it is extremely lucrative and if it provides him with an out to take part in a boxing match. At this point, the UFC does not seem interested in working with Ngannou.