Booking UFC 298 Main Card Winners Including Ilia Topuria

Ilia Topuria
Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

As the UFC concludes its latest trip to Anaheim, it’s time to predict the future for the UFC 298 main card winners including Ilia Topuria and Robert Whittaker.

Ilia Topuria vs. Movsar Evloev

The era of Alexander Volkanovski has officially ended. In a stunning performance, Ilia Topuria left the now former champion unconscious on the canvas. As he has shown in previous outings, Ilia Topuria’s disciplined boxing skills paired with a killer submission game make him one of the toughest challenges for anyone at 145 pounds. 

Even though champions with far less dominance have earned immediate rematches, the quick nature of the loss coupled with his recent failed attempts at lightweight gold mean that Ilia Topuria should look elsewhere for his next title defense.

Fellow undefeated Mosvar Evloev would make a great challenge. Evloev was last seen in a decision win over Arnold Allen in January.

Robert Whittaker vs. Sean Strickland

The four years we waited to see Robert Whittaker do battle with Paulo Costa was well worth it. The two middleweights spent the entirety of their 15 minutes together trading blows at a frenetic pace. Whittaker’s blend of calculation and risk aversion sealed the deal in his decision win.

Whittaker finds himself in an interesting position in the division. With Israel Adesanya rumored to challenge Dricus Du Plessis for the belt at UFC 300, Whittaker can get skipped over after adding to both men’s highlight reels. 

That’s why putting him against another former champion seems like the best option. Sean Strickland just lost the belt in January and will need a dance partner when he returns. The winner would make a case for reentering the title picture.

Ian Garry vs. Colby Covington

While he did not win the approval of the crowd in Anaheim, Ian Garry has once again proven that he is capable of defeating the very best in the welterweight division.  Even Geoff Neal did enough to earn one judges scorecard, Garry consistently won the exchanges and nullified the aggression. 

The UFC clearly wants to boost the undefeated Garry into being its next European star but there is still work to do. Let’s grant “The Future” his wish to face Colby Covington next. As Covington nears the end of his career with his controversial persona wearing thin on the fanbase, putting Garry over at his expense is the right move. Covington was last seen in a championship decision loss to Leon Edwards in December. 

Also Read: UFC 298 results and highlights: Latest KO videos and hilarious hot takes for tonight’s card

Merab Dvalishvili vs. Sean O’Mally/Chito Vera winner

Merab Dvalishvili left absolutely no doubt. After a competitive first round against Henry Cejudo, the Georgian contender found his rhythm and dominated the former dual champion. From the fast paced striking exchanges and chain wrestling, “Triple C” had no answers.

The only fight that makes sense for Dvalishvili is against whoever holds the bantamweight strap. Whether the argument for a title shot comes from pure merit or the clear star potential, he is next in line.

A fight with the winner of Sean O’Malley and Chito Vera needs to happen. O’Malley puts his belt on the line against the only man to defeat him in the main event at UFC 299.

Anthony Hernandez vs. Brendan Allen/Marvin Vittori winner

Coming into Saturday night, many were predicting that Anthony Hernandez and Roman Kypolov would turn in the perfect action fight to kick off the pay per view portion of UFC 298. The two middleweight contenders lived up to those expectations. 

In a back and forth scrap that pitted the Hernadez’s technical brawling with Koplyov’s varied striking game, “Fluffy” found the takedown and stubbornly chained together choke attempts until the Russian was forced to tap. 

Hernandez has earned a move up the ladder. A fight with the winner of Brendan Allen and Marvin Vettori feels right. Either Hernandez gets a big opportunity against a former title challenger or Allen has the chance to avenge his LFA loss to Fluffy. Allen and Vettori are scheduled for a Fight Night main event in April.

Also Read: Wanderlei Silva Added To UFC Hall Of Fame 2024

Ant Walker is a native of the Washington DC area that now lives in Los Angeles. He has been... More about Anthony Walker

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