UFC on ESPN 13 Post-Fight Matchmaker

UFC on ESPN 13
ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES - JULY 16: Calvin Kattar celebrates after his decision victory over Dan Ige in their featherweight fight during the UFC Fight Night event inside Flash Forum on UFC Fight Island on July 16, 2020 in Yas Island, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. (Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)

Fight fans were treated to a rare mid-week fight card on Wednesday with UFC on ESPN 13. Although the main card featured all unanimous decisions, it was an exciting event nonetheless. The UFC on ESPN 13 Post-Fight Matchmaker will give these main card unanimous decision winners opponents for their next fight.

UFC on ESPN 13 Post-Fight Matchmaker

Mounir Lazzez vs. Kalinn Williams

“The Sniper” Mounir Lazzez weathered an early storm from Abdul Razak Alhassan to earn an otherwise dominant unanimous decision victory in his UFC debut. The Tunisian moves to 10-1 as a result, and will look to build upon the early success of his UFC tenure. Lazzez called out Mike Perry after the win, that is not a good option at the moment. With Perry currently in the UFC’s doghouse and in legal trouble, there is a chance that “Platinum” could be away for a meaningful period of time. Lazzez should instead face a fellow recent UFC debutant, “Khaos the Ox Fighter” Kalinn Williams, who also scored an impressive victory over a seasoned veteran. This fight will move one fighter to 2-0 with a bevy of momentum, while sending the other back to the drawing board.

Taila Santos vs. Sabina Mazo

Taila Santos rebounded from a split decision loss and a seventeen-month layoff to defeat Molly McCann by an impressive unanimous decision. Santos is now 1-1 in the UFC after a much improved performance in her sophomore outing. In a women’s flyweight division short on contenders, any type of win streak can launch a fighter into talks of a title shot. With that in mind, Santos should face former LFA champion Sabina Mazo, who also rebounded from a debut decision loss and has won two in a row since. The winner would not only likely move into the division’s rankings, but also be in a position to face the upper echelon of the division as well.

Jimmie Rivera vs. Pedro Munhoz/Frankie Edgar winner

In a short-notice fight, Jimmie Rivera was able to outwork and outstrike Cody Stamann en route to a unanimous decision win. With the win, “El Terror” picks up only his second win in his last five fights. His last fight prior to Wednesday night was a decision loss to new champion Petr Yan, a fight that Rivera has made known he wants to avenge. While that is not going to happen in the near future, he still has a chance to work back towards it with a few wins.

At UFC 252 in a little under a month, former lightweight champion and featherweight title challenger Frankie Edgar will make his first foray into the bantamweight division on the main card against former Rivera foe Pedro Munhoz. The fight was scheduled to take place on this card, but had to be pushed back to UFC 252 due to Munhoz testing positive for COVID-19. Rivera defeated Munhoz by split decision back in November 2015, but Munhoz has only lost twice in his nine fights since and proved to be a legitimate contender. A rematch would measure how much each fighter has grown. On the other hand, the opportunity to fight with Edgar is a feather in any fighter’s cap. Either fighter that wins between Munhoz and Edgar is a reasonable next step for Rivera.

Tim Elliott vs. Jordan Espinosa

Tim Elliott snapped a three-fight skid by taking a close decision victory over Ryan Benoit on Wednesday night. The former flyweight title challenger has had an up-and-down time in both of his UFC tenures, but is always a tough out as a veteran with a uniquely erratic fighting style. Another fighter who just snapped a losing streak is Jordan Espinosa, who defeated Mark De La Rosa by decision a little over a month ago. Both Espinosa and Elliott are grappling-based fighters on the edge of the flyweight rankings. The winner will be able to turn their recent losing streak into a winning streak.

Calvin Kattar vs. Max Holloway

“Boston Strong” Calvin Kattar utilized his elite boxing skill and pressure to defeat “50K” Dan Ige by unanimous decision in the main event. Kattar now has two wins since UFC’s return to action after the absence due to COVID-19 and is proving to be a bonafide contender at featherweight. Kattar called for a title shot after the win but is likely not quite in that position just yet. The next title challenger is likely to come from the rumoured matchup between Brian Ortega and “The Korean Zombie” Chan Sung Jung.

A matchup with former champion and recent title challenger Max Holloway, however, can put him in a prime position to be next in line. Holloway lost a razor-close split decision (although not necessarily a robbery) to champion Alexander Volkanovski at UFC 251 on Saturday night. Although Holloway has lost twice to Volkanovski, both fights were close enough to warrant another rematch in some fans’ eyes. An immediate rematch is not reasonable, but if Holloway can rack up a couple of wins it could happen down the line. A fight with Kattar would put him on that path, while a Kattar win over Holloway would make him an undeniable title contender.

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