UFC Vegas 39 has wrapped up on this Saturday night and we were treated with a great stylistic matchup in the main event, with Marina Rodriguez defeating Mackenzie Dern via Decision.
The rest of the card was, if we’re being honest, a little weak on paper but still had fun fights like Randy Brown vs Jared Gooden and Charles Rosa vs Damon Jackson, but the card actually delivered more than anticipated with a lot of interesting results like Mariya Agapova defeating Sabina Mazo and Alexandr Romanov continuing his dominance.
After seeing this card, I’ve put together what I believe are the best matchups for every fighter that was on this card coming out of their results tonight.
Fights to Make After UFC Vegas 39
Marina Rodriguez – def M. Dern – Joanna Jedrzejczyk
I think Marina Rodriguez is one of the best watches in Women’s MMA at present due to her astounding striking skills that are quite stunning to watch, and coming into tonight’s main event I thought that she would win but I expected a few scares and that pretty much is what happened, with Dern securing one 10-8 round because of her dominance on the floor but lost the other 4 to Marina’s brilliant Muay Thai skills. Because of said striking ability, I believe she should test just how elite she is by facing who is thought to be the division’s #1 or #2 striker, Joanna Jedrzejczyk. she’s in a strange spot in her career after coming off those 2 losses to Rose Namajunas and then winning 2 or her next 4, whilst being a part of one of the best fights in the history of MMA. She hasn’t fought since that classic in March 2020 and I think Marina is a matchup that’ll get her fired up and dedicated to training as hard as she can. It would also provide a top contender once Rose and Zhang Weili complete their rematch and Carla Esparsa will be waiting in the wings for the winner of that one, but both Joanna and Marina would be right at the top of the division with a win.
Mackenzie Dern – def by M. Rodriguez – Claudia Gadelha
Mackenzie still showed her incomparable grappling ability in Round 2, despite ultimately losing rather convincingly to Marina Rodriguez. She’s definitely worthy of the hype she’s received over the past year and if she tightens up the traditional wresting to allow her grappling to shine, along with allowing herself to develop a point-scoring striking game, she can dominate this division but she’s still lacking in a little bit of experience and time. The perfect matchup for her is Claudia Gadelha because it helps Claudia get back in the mix after a tough couple of years for her whilst also posing a slight advantage in the striking department and good grappling to go along with it. She’s obviously not nearly as good as Dern on the ground and isn’t as good on the feet as Marina was but I think she is a better defensive wrestler than Marina and can stuff any takedown that Dern attempts. It’s a challenge for Dern but one that I think she could pass and one that could help her public image grow once more as a serious prospect.
Randy Brown – def J. Gooden – Daniel Rodriguez
Randy showed why he is still a potential player in the 170lb division tonight against Jared Gooden. His boxing looked top-notch and he fought 2 rounds with broken toes due to an amazing front kick landed in the first round. I believe he deserves the chance to fight a ranked opponent and who is better than the surging Daniel Rodriguez, who just burst into the rankings in August after beating Kevin Lee, who no one expected him to beat. Rodriguez, much like Brown, has tremendous boxing and heart that 99% of human beings don’t have. He’ll welcome a war all day but will also piece you up for 15 minutes whilst you melt under his pressure. I believe this would be a great fight for the fans and would also be a stern test for both guys.
Jared Gooden – def by Randy Brown – Impa Kasanganay
Jared had a nightmare week. First, he missed weight and had 20% of his purse taken from him, and then fights and loses which means he gets half of his pay. He’s only had a few UFC fights so I’m assuming he’s on 20/20, meaning he makes $16,000 before tax. It must hurt but that’s the price you pay for missing weight. In the actual fight, he was outclassed on the feet for 15 mins, and that’s about as deep as it goes. Didn’t have many moments during the fight. The fight for him to get back into the winning column in an impressive way would be against Impa Kasanganay. He’s 1-2 in his last 3, including his viral KO loss against Joaquin Buckley and recently dropping one to Carlston Harris. Before he had looked brilliant and then moved down to 170 and is 1-1. He would likely be the smaller guy in there but I think they both have very powerful hands and that makes for a fun fight and a dangerous fight for both.
OTHER FIGHTERS ON THE CARD
Matheus Nicolau – def T. Elliot – David Dvorak
Tim Elliot – def by M. Nicolau – Su Mudaerji
Mariya Agapova – def S. Mazo – Maryna Moroz
Sabina Mazo – def by M. Agapova – Molly McCann
Chris Gutierrez – def F. Colares – Nathaniel Wood
Felipe Colares – def by C. Gutierrez – Andre Ewell
Alexandr Romanov – def J. Vanderaa – Parker Porter
Jared Vanderaa – def by A. Romanov – Chase Sherman
Damon Jackson – def C. Rosa – Daniel Pineda
Charles Rosa – def by D. Jackson – Omar Morales
Loopy Godinez – def S. Gomez Juarez – Cory McKenna
Silvana Gomez Juarez – def by L. Godinez – Diana Belbita
Steve Garcia – def C. Ontiveros – Rong Zhu
Charlie Ontiveros – def by S. Garcia – Joaquim Silva
What matchup do you think is best? What matchup is most likely to happen? Let us know your thoughts below.