UFC 166: Fights to make for prelim winners

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Andrew Richardson-USA TODAY Sports

UFC 166 started off with a bang last night with the prelims that set the tone for the entire night. There were impressive debuts, returns, and finishes that highlighted the first half of UFC 166. Today, I look at the next fights for the prelim winners.

Kyoji Horiguchi: The former Shooto bantamweight champion was impressive in his UFC debut, dispatching of Dustin Pague via TKO in the second round. Kyoji showed resiliency in fighting off a rear naked choke earlier in the fight. The UFC will be ecstatic to have a japanese prospect in the division, and I expect him to have a step up in competition next time out. I think a fight with Chico Camus would be a nice test for Kyoji.

Andre Fili: The UFC has yet another Team Alpha Male talent in Fili. He dominated Jeremy Larsen en route to a TKO victory early in round 2. The question is where Fili will fight next. He missed weight for this fight, but that can be contributed to taking the fight on 10 days notice while training for a welterweight (170 lb) fight. If Fili fights at featherweight, I think a fight with Max Holloway makes sense.

Tony Ferguson: Ferguson made a successful return to the Octagon, quickly dispatching of Mike Rio in the first round. Ferguson’s submission garnered him the ‘submission of the night’ bonus, and was his first submission win since 2009. Before his long layoff, Ferguson was on a tear before being derailed by Michael Johnson. I think fighting the winner of the Michael Chiesa vs Colton Smith fight makes sense.

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