In the main event of UFC Vegas 52, a strawweight bout headlined the card as Jessica Andrade dropped back down to the division to face Amanda Lemos.
Andrade entered the fight coming off a first-round TKO over Cynthia Calvillo to return to the win column after losing by TKO to Valentina Shevchenko in a fight for the 125lbs belt. She went 2-1 at flyweight but opted to return to the division where she was previously champion.
Lemos, meanwhile, was riding a five-fight winning streak since dropping to strawweight after having her UFC debut at bantamweight. She picked up the biggest win of her career in her most previous effort as she edged out Angela Hill by split decision.
In the end it was Andrade getting another first-round stoppage win, as she scored a history-making submission over Lemos to cement herself as a strawweight contender. Now, after UFC Vegas 52 here is what I think should be next for Andrade and Lemos.
Jessica Andrade proved she still is a threat in this strawweight division as she made quick work of Amanda Lemos who was on a nice streak. She is a former champion who is also 1-1 against the current champ with the loss being by split decision so it wouldn’t be a surprise to see the UFC quickly make the trilogy fight.
With the title fight set for May 7, the division is on a bit of a hold as they are waiting to see how the Namajunas-Esparza rematch plays out. Before this fight, it seemed likely that Marina Rodriguez would get the next title shot but after this win, Andrade should face the winner of Namajunas-Esparza 2 sometime in the late summer or fall.
Amanda Lemos had a big step up in competition at UFC Vegas 52 and came up short against Andrade who has only lost to current or former champs as of late. Lemos still can be a future contender but will need a step down in comeption.
When Lemos returns, a logical next fight is the winner of Jessica Penne vs. Luana Pinheiro which takes place on April 30. The timing works out while the winner will get the chance to fight someone ranked ahead of them while Lemos still gets a ranked opponent.
Who do you think should be next for Jessica Andrade and Amanda Lemos after UFC Vegas 52?