Saturday night was the UFC 288 Pay-Per View, Sterling vs Cejudo high level chess match made ordering the fight worth it as I can watch those guys fight everyday. Overall UFC 288 was a fun card to watch with some fun fights and debut fighters that will have promising careers.
Definitely have some thoughts on fighters next fights and careers moving forward.
Cejudo Calls out Merab
Gameplan was ruined when Cejudo lost to Sterling, devastated in his post fight as he’s confused on what happens next. Thinking about retirement because of the loss but after recovering mentally called out Aljamain Sterling’s training partner Merab Dvalishvili.
“This sh*t is far from over! @danawhite I want @merab.dvalishvili head on a plate! #ufcboston.” Henry Cejudo said on Instagram https://mmajunkie.usatoday.com/2023/05/ufc-news-henry-cejudo-wants-merab-dvalishvili-head-on-a-plate
Storyline fits perfectly as Cejudo must defeat Sterling’s right hand man before avenging his loss to Sterling.
All open to Cejudo vs Merab, Imagine what Cejudo will look like in his second appearance in 2023. Body wasn’t conditioned for MMA fighting because of the long layoff.
Interesting fight to watch, curious how Cejudo looks and fighting strategy is against Merab. How does he deal with Merab’s constant pressure and sambo fighting style?
Movsar Evolev Wants Korean Zombie
Bad luck with canceled fight against Bryce Mitchell, Fight I was really looking forward but we got to watch Fight of the Night anyway.
Evolev was expected to dominate Diego Lopes but the prospect came to play for three rounds. Dealt with adversity on the floor escaping couple submissions and getting hit on the feet. Downloaded his data beating Lopes on the feet with some nasty hooks to the body as he was the far better striker.
Successful takedowns, better strikes, pressuring more lead to Evolev getting his hand raised.
Gained more fans and recognition with his UFC 288 fight and potential title challenger in few years with more important wins. Fighting the Korean Zombie can lead to potential title shot soon.
“A lot of fighters, they don’t want to fight against me, maybe [Brian] Ortega, maybe [Korean] Zombie [Chan Sung Jung], maybe someone else. I need big names.” Movsar Evolev said on https://www.mmafighting.com/2023/5/6/23714147/ufc-288-results-movsar-evloev-staves-off-valiant-effort-from-diego-lopes-to-remain-undefeated
Evolev vs Korean Zombie is one great battle allowing the Russian rising star to promote himself against a MMA legend well known for the previous wars. Main Card fight for UFC PPV during September or October, UFC Boston would be an idea?
Diego Lopes What a Debut Fight So Impressed
Well aware of who Diego Lopes before short notice fight. Diego Lopes was one of the best Featherweight prospects in the world, Former Lux Fight League Featherweight Champion defeating quality opponents.
UFC 288 Diego Lopes shown why he’s one of the best prospects by having a three round battle with #10 ranked fighter. Expected to Evolev a tough fight as he’s the perfect matchup because of his size and fighting style but didn’t believe he’d give Movsar Evolev his toughest fight yet.
Proved us wrong, surprised some new eyes including Dana White. Rewarding Diego Lopes fight of the night bonus and his win money as well.
“Awesome. Incredible performance. The kid has got a ton of heart, he’s an absolute dog [and] I loved every minute of it,” the 53-year-old raved when asked about Lopes’ short-notice UFC debut. https://talksport.com/sport/mma/1417246/dana-white-diego-lopes-double-pay-bonus-ufc-288/
Imagine what Diego Lopes looks like in a full training camp, He’d look like a beast facing unranked Featherweights like Charles Jourdain, Damon Jackson, Lerone Murphy in London. Excited to watch Diego Lopes rookie season and continue to show his contender potential.
Ikram Aliskerov Love the Callout but No Chance
Ikram Aliskerov shown why he’s one of the best Middleweight prospects with the pin point KO against Phil Hawes a solid competitor in his UFC debut.
Displayed his KO power instead of the world class sambo skills.
“I’m really happy with the win. To be honest, this is my first knockout of my professional career, and to win my debut in the UFC with such a fiery knockout, I feel great about it.” Ikram Aliskerov https://mmajunkie.usatoday.com/lists/ufc-288-newark-video-ikram-aliskerov-explains-bo-nickal-callout-khamzat-chimaev-rematch
Post fight Ikram Aliskerov called out Bo Nickal but no chance Dana White will ruin there multi-million dollar product too big of a risk for the UFC as it possibly puts a blemish on Nickal’s record. UFC is smartly building Bo Nickal’s career.
“We’ll have to wait and see what UFC decides, but I know this guy (Bo Nickal). I have nothing but respect to him, and I know he’s a great wrestler. But he said that he wants to fight a wrestler from Dagestan and he wants to show what wrestling really is.” Ikram Aliskerov https://mmajunkie.usatoday.com/lists/ufc-288-newark-video-ikram-aliskerov-explains-bo-nickal-callout-khamzat-chimaev-rematch
On the other hand love the callout as brings Aliskerov’s name in the headlines instead of silence. Rest of 2023 and in the future will continue to be talked about as future middleweight contender.
Potential opponents can be Andre Petroski who called out Bo Nickal, Dusko Tudorovic, Andre Muniz, Brad Tavares can be next fights in 2023.