Who would you like to see Randy Couture fight next?
Assuming CroCop wins his fight with Kongo in grand fashion and shows that he really is back in top form, I think I'd like to see Randy fight CroCop next. Randy in theory might have an easier time with him, especially in the cage, than he would with Big Nog, but I just think it would be a really interesting, and epic, matchup.
Nog would be a close second choice for me. Although he didn't look too spectacular in his last fight with Herring, if he's on his "A" game that would be a really tough fight for Randy.
(Actually, I take those back -- Fedor is who I'd REALLY like to seem him fight next, but we all know that ain't gonna' happen).
Fedor vs Randy is obviously the best choice, but seemingly an impossibility at this point due to continued stalling on both sides in contract negotiations. Rumor I heard from Josh Gross of Sherdog is that Fedor will be in the United States this week in Las Vegas, so that could be good news.
If that doesn't work out, a Cro Cop victory over Kongo would work out the best time wise. The next big match scheduled is Vera vs Sylvia, but that is not until the end of October and would really draw out the next title fight. That match will probably be used to determine the number one contendor for the title defense after the next immediate one.
Noguiera needs more fights, he isn't over at all with the UFC fans and he's just the guy who survived the fat guy from Texas kicking him in the face right at the moment. Give Noguiera Frank Mir to fight, that would be a beauty.
Either Big Nog or Fedor. Crocop lost to Gonzaga and needs a few more wins in UFC to redeem himself back to contender status. I can't think of any other good contenders, maybe Arlovski, but I'd like to see him face Crocop instead.
I know folks will hate to hear it, but the former champ deserves some consideration. Don't get me wrong, I'd personally rather see Randy face Fedor or Cro Cop, but if Big Tim pulls out the win versus Brandon Vera he has to be in the mix.
No think again, Tim has had crap fights for the last year, and couldn't even finish Monson. Also Mir will never get a title shot unless he drops another 25lbs and somehow can make it past people who are not cans.
CroCop needs to win at least 2 in a row.
The next fight will be Big Nog if Fedor isn't signed. The problem is White will not let him fight in Sambo matches or sign any other red devil members.
Love him or hate him, Sylvia has five UFC heavyweight belts in his trophy case. The former champ should ALWAYS gets a shot to win his title back.
Couture got KTFO by the Iceman and got another LHW title fight after a lackluster win versus Mike Van Arsdale. Then he got KTFO again, retired for a year, and got an immediate shot at Big Tim's HW strap.
Matt Hughes got KTFO out by GSP, wins a lackluster decision versus Chris Lytle, and now he is first in line to take take away Matt Serra's belt.
Rich Franklin got demolished by Anderson Silva, then beat up on a journeyman in Jason McDonald and scored a questionable decision versus Yushin Okami and now he has another shot.
Hell, Andrei Arlovski got an IMMEDIATE rematch after getting KTFO by Sylvia in their second fight.
Should Cro Cop get past Kongo, I think this is the most logical matchup for Randy.
If Cro Cop loses again, I wouldn't mind seeing Arlovski get a shot. I think he'd make for a good fight with Randy, as Arlovski has fast hands and has a good takedown defense and if he does get taken down, can handle himself on the ground.
I hear what you're saying, but I think what those examples combined prove is that there is no set-in-stone rhyme or reason as to how the UFC decides who gets the next title shot. They, loosely speaking, generally try to give it to whoever is "most deserving," but that's not always a clear, easily-quantifiable thing to define, so they also take into account what would make for an interesting fight that the fans would get excited for and buy tickets/PPV's for.
With that last point in mind, I have to think that the fans' interest level in seeing Randy fight Tim next is ranked somewhere around 10th, after CroCop, Nog, Arlovski, etc., etc., etc. Sylvia was never liked very much to begin with, and often put on pretty boring fights even when he was champ.
The UFC wants to make money.
Plus, Randy's fight with Sylvia wasn't even close. It would be one thing to consider a rematch pretty soon if it had been a pretty close fight, but it was basically a 5-round shutout.
Oh true, in mid-2008 or so, after he (Tim) has had a couple of successful fights, I can very possibly see that. But as Randy's next fight (which I would assume would be around the end of this year or first month or two of next year), no.
There is no way Tim is getting a rematch anytime soon. Franklin is getting a title shot again because the 185 bracket is lackluster, he is the only one left after Silva cleared it out. Also Hughes is getting a title shot because 170 might be stacked but Bj is back at 155(for now) St Pierre lost and no one wanted to film TUF 6. Also I believe Hughes and Matt Serra have a huge beef.
With the influx of talent that the HW division has now even Andre Arlovski is not even close to a title shot. What did he due to Werdum but run away from him. Nog, CroCop, Vera, Fedor(he will sign) Barnett.(will sign also) Barnett will follow Fedor for his title shot. Till Fedor signs Nog will rule the HW division.
I hope you're right about Fedor signing, but as of now I'm very doubtful. I would think that if a deal were able to be worked out, it would've been worked out by now. Fedor's team and the UFC seem to be too far apart on too many terms. But I hope I'm wrong.
When was the last time a defeated UFC champion had to win more than two fights before getting a rematch? I can't recall any other than guys who (a) left the organization or (b) went on a losing streak after losing the title.
The UFC has always given their champions quick rematches, and I see no reason why they would break that precedent for the second most successful HW champion in the history of the organization. Only Randy Couture (6) holds more UFC HW belts than Tim Sylvia (5), and only Couture (9), Hughes (9) & Tito (6) hold more overall UFC belts than Sylvia. No matter what you think of him, Sylvia is one of the most prolific champions in the history of the UFC.
Besides, Tim signed a new contract just before his loss to Randy and I'll guarantee you Monte Cox got a rematch clause put in there. If Tim wins his fights, he will be getting another title shot sometime in the next six to twelve months.
I think Crocop should fight Randy if he gets past Kongo. After Mirko was knocked out by Gonzaga he seemed to be written off by some and Gonzaga elevated beyond his career accomplishments. I wasn't really excited about Randy vs Gonzaga since I didn't really know much about Gonzaga. Randy is great and we knew he was going to come in with a great gameplan. Fighting with a broken nose isn't easy especially when you have somebody clinching you and smothering you, so I think Gonzaga did as well as he could. I think Crocop has the best chance of beating Randy of the fighters that are in the UFC. Nog could win but I think he would take plenty of damage in the process and I don't know how much Nog has left to take another beating and pull out a submission victory.