In the main event of UFC 248, Israel Adesanya was looking to defend his middleweight title against the divisions ‘boogeyman’ in Yoel Romero. The co-main attraction saw Weili Zhang looking for her first title defense of the strawweight belt against former division champion, Joanna Jedrzejczyk.
In the end, neither title changed hands as Adesanya won a lackluster decision. Zhang, meanwhile, won by split-decision in what many are calling one of the greatest fights of all-time.
Now, following UFC 248, here is what we think should be next for the fighters involved in the title fights.
Israel Adesanya was entering this fight on the cusp of superstardom and many thought a win over Yoel Romero would push him into that. Yet, that was far from the case as the fans were booing the entire time and the likes of Dana White and Paulo Costa said it was a terrible fight.
Although Adesanya won a lackluster decision, he still remains the middleweight champion and should take on Costa next. The two do not like each other and they trash-talked one another again after this scrap.
Adesanya vs. Costa should be a highly-anticipated fight and one that can happen sometime this summer.
Entering the UFC 248 main event, many thought this would be Yoel Romero’s final shot at a UFC title, especially if he came up short which he did.
After the results were read, Romero blamed Adesanya for running the entire fight, yet many, including Dana White, also put the blame on Romero.
Now, there is a real question of what does the UFC do with Romero next. He is on a three-fight losing skid and doesn’t seem to be on a clear path to a title fight. So, he should look to return sometime in the summer or fall against Kelvin Gastelum.
Gastelum hasn’t fought since his decision loss to Darren Till and is still without a fight. The winner of Gastelum-Romero could start to work their way up the rankings while the loser would become a gatekeeper at middleweight. It could serve as the main event of a Fight Night card or be a welcomed addition to any pay-per-view.
Entering her first title defense, there were a ton of questions surrounding Weili Zhang and whether or not she can go five rounds. Well, she answered all of those as she edged out a split-decision win in a phenomenal fight.
Now, she should face Rose Namajunas if she can get past Jessica Andrade. If the Brazilian wins, it seems unlikely the UFC would do Zhang-Andrade 2 given how dominant that first fight was.
If Namajunas wins, Zhang vs. Namajunas should be the fight, considering Tatiana Suarez is still out with an injury. But, if Andrade wins, the UFC should look to run back Zhang-Jedrzejczyk.
Joanna Jedrzejczyk is now 0-4 in her last four title fights. But this one against Zhang, many media members and fighters thought she did enough to win.
She had a ton of damage on her face and should take the time to heal and see what happens at UFC 249 between Namajunas and Andrade.
Although Namajunas appears to be next in line, Jedrzejczyk could fight someone like Yan Xiaonan, who’s a surging contender to cement herself a top of the division. But, we’ve seen in the past, the Pole is comfortable waiting for a title shot so don’t be surprised to see her wait to fight Zhang again.
What do you think should be next for the four fighters involved in the title fights at UFC 248?
This article first appeared on BJPENN.com on 3/8/2020.