Chris Weidman. One of the UFC’s biggest stars, and one of MMA’s American heroes. The former Middleweight champion of the world. And now, the most recent victim of Yoel Romero’s dominance.
Despite the fact that Chris Weidman has had a commanding career in mixed martial arts, it goes without saying that a two-fight losing streak calls for some major changes. Or does it? The truth is, Weidman is going to be fine.
A two-fight losing streak looks bad on paper, however Weidman has not been on a constant decline in the two losses. He hasn’t lost his identity, and he certainly does not need to change his identity, because at the end of the day, it’s just two losses. And that is fine. Granted, Weidman has made it very clear that he is done losing fights.
“I want to be done losing. I don’t want to lose anymore.” Weidman said to Ariel Helwani on The MMA Hour. So what’s next? Ultimately, Weidman has two options. He can pull an Anthony Pettis and switch weight classes to compete with different fighters, or he can stick with the middleweight division, which is one of the most exciting yet most uncertain divisions in the UFC. Weidman’s best option is to stay at middleweight for one more fight, and then analyze options. Which brings the next question, who should Weidman fight?
This fight would be a win/win for both Weidman and Brunson. Although Weidman is on a two-fight losing streak, he is still considered a contender in the middleweight division. Many fans are writing-out Derek Brunson as a contender after suffering a first-round knockout to Robert Whittaker on November 27. A win for Weidman will get him back in the win column, and a win for Brunson will put him back in talks as a solid contender in the middleweight division.
It sort of feels like this fight needs to happen. With Weidman ranked at fourth in the division and Mousasi ranked at fifth in the division, the winner of this fight will most definitely be regarded as a title contender, and could very well be next in line for a title shot depending on the Jacare Souza and Luke Rockhold situation.
Although Weidman vs. Whittaker would be a very fun fight, it just doesn’t make sense right now. If Weidman was on a win streak, this fight could’ve served as a title contention fight, however with Weidman on a losing streak, this fight wouldn’t serve Whittaker as much as if Whittaker fought Jacare Souza or Luke Rockhold. But again, this would be one hell of a fight.
Tim Kennedy is not a name that is frequently being paired with Chris Weidman, however Kennedy’s comeback fight could also be a good comeback fight for Weidman. A fight featuring these two fighters would not be the UFC’s first choice, however it would be one of the most patriotic fights in UFC history. Kennedy is known for being “Unapologetically American”, whereas Chris Weidman is the “All-American”. It is safe to say this fight would have fans chanting “USA! USA! USA!”.
Weidman has been very vocal about wanting to rebound from his two consecutive losses and fight as soon as possible. The UFC comes to Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York, on February 11 for UFC 209. Although it’s not safe to say who Weidman’s opponent will be, it may be safe to say we will see him again in a few months.