UFC Sacramento: Post-Fight Matchmaking for Main Card Winners

For the first time in over two years, the UFC made their return to Sactown for UFC Sacramento. It was their fifth appearance in the city, but the first at the brand new Golden 1 Center. After another fun night of fights, it was time to play matchmaker and determine who was next for the main card winners.

In the main event of UFC Sacramento, Michelle Waterson went into hostile territory and took out the female face of Team Alpha Male, Paige VanZant. Who would be next for “The Karate Hottie” after a big jump in the women’s strawweight division?

As for the co-main event, Mickey Gall proved he was for real when he submitted Sage Northcutt his fourth rear-naked choke victory. Will he get his wish and fight Dan Hardy in his lightweight debut?

In the final fight of his career, Sacramento’s own Urijah Faber picked up the win over fellow veteran, Brad Pickett. There are no more matches to be made for “The California Kid” after this fight.

Finally, to open up the main card, Alan Jouban handed Mike Perry the first loss of his career. Who will “Brahma” fight next in order to climb up the welterweight rankings?

All of these questions will be answered on this UFC Sacramento edition of Post-Fight Matchmaking.

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Michelle Waterson vs. Jessica Andrade

Ring rust was not an issue for 30-year-old Michelle Waterson (14-4) as she only needed a round to choke Paige VanZant out with a rear naked choke. “The Karate Hottie” earned a Performance of the Night bonus and improved to 2-0 in the UFC after winning the UFC Sacramento main event.

Following Waterson’s win, Jessica Andrade (15-5) called her out on Twitter to fight at UFC 207. She has lost two opponents and is currently in Las Vegas without an opponent.

This fight should happen next, whether it is in two weeks or later. With most of the top fighters in the women’s strawweight rankings coming off losses, this should be a title eliminator.

Andrade submitted Joanne Calderwood with a first-round guillotine in her last fight in September at UFC 203 in Cleveland.

Like Waterson, the 25-year-old Brazilian also earned a Performance of the Night bonus in her last fight. Andrade is 2-0 since moving down to strawweight, finishing former title contender, Jessica Penne, in her divisional debut.

Mickey Gall vs. Lando Vannata

In the battle of Dana White’s Lookin’ for a Fight alumni, Mickey Gall (4-0) submitted Sage Northcutt in the second round with a rear-naked choke. The 24-year-old New Jersey native remained undefeated and improves to 2-0 inside the Octagon. All four of his career wins ended via rear-naked choke.

As always, Gall had to call someone out during his post-fight interview. Not only did he announce his move down to lightweight, he also called out Dan Hardy. However, with Hardy being out for four years while still trying to be cleared by doctors, the status of “The Outlaw’s” return is unknown.

If Gall wants to fight soon and still move down to lightweight, he should fight another prospect: Lando Vannata (9-1). He may not be as popular as the fighters Gall calls out, but Vannata was going to get there eventually after his last fight.

Vannata, 24, is coming off what should be the knockout of the year when he knocked John Makdessi out with a wheel kick. “Groovy” earned a performance of the night bonus and his first UFC win with that KO eight days ago at UFC 206 in Toronto.

Alan Jouban vs. Colby Covington

Alan Jouban (15-4) fought a smart fight to earn a unanimous decision over the no longer unbeaten Mike Perry in the UFC Sacramento main card opener. “Brahma” now rides a three-fight winning streak and has won five of his last six bouts. The 35-year-old professional model is 6-2 since joining the UFC and has won three Fight of the Night bonuses.

Earlier in the night, Colby Covington (11-1) also went the distance and came out victorious. He should fight Jouban next for a spot in the UFC welterweight rankings.

Covington, 28, showed improved striking, but ultimately used his wrestling to dominate Bryan Barberena for the unanimous decision. “Chaos” has now won three consecutive bouts and improves to 6-1 since joining the UFC.