One Fight to Make for Every Ranked UFC Heavyweight

Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images

One Fight to Make for Every Ranked UFC Heavyweight


One Fight to Make for Every Ranked UFC Heavyweight


Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images

In my first article in a new series, I will be diving into the ranked fighters in each division who do not have a scheduled fight and giving them their next opponent. These are fights that I’d love to see, and fights that make sense for the division’s future. 


#1 Ciryl Gane- Scheduled fight for the vacant UFC heavyweight championship on March 4 at UFC 285 against Jon Jones.


#2 Stipe Miocic vs #3 Sergei Pavlovich number one contender fight- Why not start this off with a bit of a dream matchup? Second ranked Stipe Miocic has yet to step foot in the octagon since his loss to Francis Ngannou in 2020, but is still part of the active roster and one of the highest-ranked contenders in the division. There has been talk of him returning for some time now and with the heavyweight division as open as it is, there is no better time than now. His opponent would be the surging third ranked contender Sergei Pavlovich who is looking to get his first shot at the title. This fight would prove what Miocic has left in the tank along with if Pavlovich is ready to compete with the best of the best in the Heavyweight Division, making this a perfect match. The winner would most likely be next in line for the belt, which means both fighters should be at their best and make for an incredibly exciting fight. 

#4 Curtis Blaydes vs #6 Tom Aspinall rematch- I feel like this is one that is practically a given. Back in 2022, Curtis Blaydes and Tom Aspinall were set to main a UFC Fight Night in London and within the first minute of the fight, Aspinall went down with a catastrophic knee injury. When asked, both fighters seemed open to the idea of a rematch and as Aspinall’s return is coming closer, and a fight has yet to be scheduled for Blaydes, the rematch is looking more and more likely. I think I speak for all the UFC Fans out there when I say it’s a fight we’d love to see run back and could make for another incredible fight night main event. 


#5 Tai Tuivasa vs #7 Serghei Spivak- When coming up with this fight I felt bad for Tuivasa because it feels like this is setting up for exactly what happened in his last fight against Sergei Pavlovich but I think this fight would be a lot closer and is a perfect test for both contenders. Tuivasa is on a two fight losing streak, while Spivak is surging up the rankings with three straight wins. This would be a different matchup than Tuivasa is used to, since recently Tuivasa has been going up against powerful strikers, while Spivak’s primary game plan is based on his ground work. If Tuivasa wins this fight, it proves his run to the top wasn’t a fluke, and he can still hang with the top of the division. If Spivac wins, it proves despite his easier schedule, he is well deserving of being a top five heavyweight contender.


#8 Alexander Volkov- Scheduled fight against #13 Alexander Romanov on March 11 at UFC Fight Night: Yan vs Dvalishvili. 


#9 Jairzinho Rozenstruik- Scheduled Fight with #14 Jailton Almeida on May 13 at UFC Fight Night: Smith vs Walker


#10 Marcin Tybura vs #11 Derrick Lewis- This fight is a step-up in competition for Tybura after a win over Blagoy Ivanov, but is really a fight to see whether or not Lewis has anything left in the tank. His last few times out, Lewis has looked sluggish and has been defeated in the first round by both of his last two opponents. What benefits Lewis in this fight is that Tybura is not much of a threat to dominate him on the ground, as he is primarily a distance striker. He is also not nearly as fast or powerful as Sergei Pavlovich or Ciryl Gane so Tybura’s pressure shouldn’t be too much of a concern. If Lewis is unable to get back on track with a knockout over Tybura it may be time to put down the gloves and call it a career. 


#12 Chris Daukaus vs Ilir Latifi- Daukaus is in an interesting spot in his career right now, as in 2021, before his fight with Derrick Lewis, he looked unstoppable. Now he is on a three fight losing streak, all three of which by knockout. When Daukaus fought lower level competition, he was able to get through it with ease, so it may be time to test him with lower competition again to see if it’ll bring his confidence back. This could also see if the two fight win streak of Latifi could amount to him earning a spot in the rankings.  

#15 Blagoy Ivanov vs Rodrigo Nascimento- Although this may not be the most interesting of the fights listed, it is one I believe makes sense. Ivanov is holding on to that #15 ranking by a thread, and Nascimento’s only loss came to a ranked fighter. So, why not give Nascimento the chance after winning his last fight to move up into the rankings and prove himself against tougher competition.


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