Fight Fixin’: Post-UFC on FUEL TV 7 Losers Edition

By Adam Martin Subscribe to Articles by Adam Martin

Fight Fixin’ is a fantasy matchmaking article that comes out after every major event and features possible matchups for main card winners and/or losers from the previous event.

Michael McDonald

Michael McDonald may have lost via submission to Renan Barao in
the main event of UFC on FUEL TV 7, but it’s not the end of the world for the
22-year-old, who still has many years left in this sport. In a shallow division
like bantamweight, losing one fight – especially a title fight – doesn’t
necessarily set you as far back as it would in say, the welterweight division,
so McDonald has nothing to worry about.

For his next bout I want McDonald to fight another top-ranked
bantamweight, and I would like for that someone to be former WEC bantamweight
champion Brian Bowles. Bowles hasn’t fought since losing to Urijah Faber at UFC 139 in November 2011 due to a variety of injuries, but when he returns he’ll
surely still be in the mix for the title, despite the time off.

McDonald vs. Bowles would be an exciting fight, and it sounds
like the perfect co-main event of a FUEL TV or FX card.

Fight to make: Michael McDonald vs. Brian Bowles

Dustin Poirier

Like McDonald, Dustin Poirier may have lost to Cub Swanson in
the co-main event of UFC London, but the 24-year-old is still one of the best
featherweights on the planet, and the loss is only a temporary setback for him,
especially since he made the fight competitive and survived to a decision.

For his next bout, I would like to see Poirier fight another
top-ranked featherweight coming off a loss, and that’s Erik Koch, who was TKO’d
by Ricardo Lamas at UFC on FOX 6. Both Poirier and Koch are young
featherweights who will be in the top 10 of the UFC’s featherweight division
for a long time, and a fight between the two would deliver fireworks.

I say match them up and have them headline the FX prelims for a
UFC pay-per-view event.

Fight to make: Dustin Poirier vs. Erik Koch

Cyrille Diabate

After suffering an apparent leg injury, Muay Thai striker
Cyrille Diabate was forced to quit on the stool against Jimi Manuwa, snapping
his two-fight win streak and dropping his UFC record to 3-4. It was a
disappointing performance by Diabate up until the injury, but we’ll never know
what would have happened had he continued in the bout.

For his next fight, I say match him up with Igor Pokrajac, who
lost a decision to Joey Beltran at UFC on FX 6, only to see Beltran get popped
for steroids and have the fight ruled a No Contest. Like Diabate with his
injury, there’s no telling what would have happened to Pokrajac in that fight
had his opponent not used PEDs, so it’s a fun matchup between two light
heavyweight bangers that could be a prelim on an FX card.

Fight to make: Cyrille Diabate vs. Igor Pokrajac

Jorge Santiago

After losing to Gunnar Nelson by decision in a main card bout,
Jorge Santiago drops to 1-5 all-time in the UFC, and his future with the
promotion is very much in the air.

But even though he has a poor record, the fighters Santiago
lost to in the Octagon are, for the most part, studs: Alan Belcher, Chris Leben, Brian Stann, Demian Maia, and now Nelson. It’s for this reason that I
would like for the UFC to give him one last chance to get a victory.

Therefore Santiago needs to fight someone else on the verge of
being cut from the UFC, and that’s Jay Hieron, who lost to Tyron Woodley at UFC 156 to drop his all-time Octagon record to 0-4.

This would be a loser leaves town match between two veterans of
the sport who have had a hard time fighting higher-level competition in the
UFC, and would be a prelim for a TUF Finale type card.

Fight to make: Jorge Santiago vs. Jay Hieron

Ryan Jimmo

Although Ryan Jimmo fought valiantly against
James Te Huna, he ultimately lost a close decision and his 17-fight win streak
was snapped in the process. But Jimmo, who tied the UFC record for quickest
knockout in his debut back at UFC 149, showed a tremendous amount of heart and
striking ability in the bout and there’s no doubt in my mind there are still
plenty of exciting matchups for him in the Octagon.

For his next bout, I’d like to see Jimmo take on another
striker in Brandon Vera, who hasn’t competed since losing via TKO to Mauricio “Shogun” Rua at UFC on FOX 4. Both Jimmo and Vera are strikers, and this fight
would likely take place in the standup department, making this a terrific
matchup for the fans.

I say book the fight as a preliminary bout on an upcoming UFC
on FOX card, and have these two pump up the crowd with a back-and-forth brawl
before the main card starts.

Fight to make: Ryan Jimmo vs. Brandon Vera

Che Mills

Che Mills may have lost via split decision to Matt Riddle on
the judges’ scorecards, but anyone who watched the fight knows he was
completely dominated for the entirety of it and that the 29-28 Mills score was
trash. UFC president Dana White also criticized Mills at the post-fight press
conference for his poor game plan, which is never a good thing, although I
highly doubt he’ll get the pink slip.

Mills is a solid striker and a crowd pleaser, but he showed in
the Riddle fight that his takedown defence and ground game just isn’t up to par
in the UFC welterweight division. Although he’ll be a solid middle of the pack
guy, Mills will never be a contender, and he needs to be fighting guys ranked
lower on the ladder.

I say match him up with veteran Mike Swick, who was knocked out
by Matt Brown at UFC on FOX 5. It should be an exciting striking battle between
two vets, and it would be a great prelim for any FOX or PPV card.

Fight to make: Che Mills vs. Mike Swick

UFC on FUEL TV 7: Barao vs. McDonald took place on February 16, 2013 at Wembley Arena in London, UK.

Click the stars to rate how good you think UFC on FUEL TV 7 was.

What Do You Think of This Fight/Event?