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Matches to Make After UFC Fight Night 35

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Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images

Will the real Luke Rockhold please stand up? After a horrid UFC debut, Luke Rockhold made an impact in his sophomore UFC effort by defeating fellow top ten middleweight Costas Philippou via first round TKO. Rockhold was not the only fighter to make a huge impression. Guys like Brad Tavares, TJ Dillashaw, and Cole Miller all made huge impacts on the card and are lining themselves up for fights with top-tier competition. Take a look at what matches the UFC needs to make for Rockhold and the rest of the card after UFC Fight Night 35.

Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images
Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images

Luke Rockhold

Luke Rockhold was finally able to show UFC fans what made him such an impressive fighter in StrikeForce with his liver kick finish of Costas Philippou. Rockhold can only go up from here in the rankings and needs a matchup that could crown the next contender for the UFC Middleweight Title. A bout with Michael Bisping makes sense on multiple levels. First, there’s a lot of bad blood between Rockhold and Bisping. Bisping has gone on record to say that he’s the unofficial StrikeForce Middleweight Champion because he knocked out Rockhold in training. That obviously didn’t sit well with Rockhold who called Bisping out shortly after beating Philippou. The UFC needs to book this matchup as it makes sense rankings-wise and has a back story that could fuel a Fox Sports One headliner.

Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images
Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images

Brad Tavares

The Ultimate Fighter receives a lot of slack for its inability to produce quality UFC fighters, but nobody told Brad Tavares that. Since his stint on TUF 11, Tavares has won seven UFC bouts including his win on Wednesday over Lorenz Larkin. Outside of a few rocky moments, Tavares was largely in control of the bout. His impressive performance should earn him a shot against a top ten fighter. Tavares should fight Tim Kennedy in his next bout to see if he truly is a contender.

Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images
Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images

TJ Dillashaw

TJ Dillashaw continued to show his improvement inside the Octagon with his three round drumming of Mike Easton. When Dillashaw was first introduced to the UFC, he was nothing more than a wrestler with a good top game. That all has changed as his striking is now just as dangerous as his wrestling.  Since losing in the finals of the Ultimate Fighter Season fourteen, Dillashaw has gone on a 5-1 run in the UFC with his only loss being a questionable split decision to Raphael Assuncao. With his solid resume and constantly evolving skills, Dillashaw needs a top five fighter next. Should Eddie Wineland get past Yves Jabouin later this month, a fight between him and Dillashaw would be excellent. 

Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images
Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images

Yoel Romero

For two rounds it seemed that the Yoel Romero hype train had crashed. Romero looked like a far inferior fighter to Derek Brunson for ten minutes before a couple of big shots by Romero stole the victory from Brunson’s grasp. Romero’s performance in the fight is a cause for concern, but with a guy his age, the UFC cannot afford to bring him along slowly. A fight between Romero and the winner of Jacare Souza and Francis Carmont would be perfect for the soon to be thirty-seven year old.

Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images
Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images

Cole Miller

It seems like Cole Miller is finally putting it all together inside the Octagon. Miller dominated every aspect of his MMA fight against Sam Sicilia before submitting the TUF Live veteran in the second round. After the fight, Miller called out Donald Cerrone, but I don’t think that fight will ever happen at 145 pounds. Put Miller in the cage with Conor McGregor to see if it’s the Irishman’s time to shine or Miller’s moment to rise to contendership.

THE REST OF THE CARD

Costas Philippou vs. Rafael Natal

Lorenz Larkin vs. Andrew Craig

Mike Easton vs. Vaughan Lee

Derek Brunson vs. Ronny Markes

John Moraga vs. John Dodson

Dustin Ortiz vs. Tim Elliot

Ramsey Nijem vs. KJ Noons

Elias Silverio vs. Tony Ferguson

Trevor Smith vs. Caio Magalhaes

Louis Smolka vs. Kyoji Horiguchi

Alptekin Ozkilic vs. Richie Vaculik

Vinc Pichel vs. Katsunori Kikuno

Beneil Dariush vs. Yancy Medeiros

Charlie Brenneman vs. Isaac Vallie-Flagg

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Daniel Reveles
Born and raised in Santa Barbara, California, Daniel Reveles' interest in Mixed Martial Arts began at the age of fourteen while attending a Fantasy Football draft at a Friend's house. That day Daniel's buddies ordered UFC 88 on Pay-Per-View featuring lauded striker and hometown hero Chuck “The Iceman” Liddell squaring off with Division One Wrestler “Suga” Rashad Evans. After seeing “the wrestler” Rashad Evans put the Ice Man out cold with an overhand right, Daniel became instantly hooked by the unpredictability of the sport. Since that moment Daniel has become well versed in Mixed Martial Arts History and has yet to miss an event. Daniel is currently studying at the University of California Santa Barbara to receive his Bachelor's Degree in Communications with hopes of becoming the next big media mogul. When he is not watching MMA or studying you can find Daniel hanging out with his family and friends or taking in a game at the lovely Dodger Stadium.