What’s Next For Edson Barboza After His Dominant Win at UFC Fight Island 5?

UFC featherweight Edson Barboza emerged victorious in his second outing at 145-pounds when he faced Makwan Amirkhani on Fight Island. The bout was booked for the co-main event slot and Amirkhani filled in for Sodiq Yuseff, who had issues with his visa. Barboza desperately needed to get back on track after going 5-1 in his previous six outings.

The Brazilian fighter imposed his superior striking on Makwan, who had no answer for Edson’s power and precision. Barboza effectively mixed body kick and shovel hooks to drain his opponent’s gas tank. Moreover, he dropped ‘Mr. Finland’ to the canvas on several different occasions with powerful right jabs that went largely unanswered.

Edson Barboza calls his shot

The 21-9 fighter has finally got himself back on track with a powerful performance and will look to build on his success. He spoke to Dan Hardy in the octagon following his win and broke down his surgical win over Amirkhani. Additionally, he made his intentions for the future abundantly clear.

“I expected something exactly like that, try to move a little, try to take me down. But hey, I’m always ready. I’m very happy. I’m very, very happy to get my ‘W’ back to my house.

“I wanna be champ. I’m here to be a champ. Guys, I am ready to be a champ. Please give me a top five, top six, whatever. I’m ready. Anybody, top five, top six. I’m always ready to go.”

Although Edson’s performance made a powerful statement, it is unlikely that he is catapulted into the top five. His first outing against Dan Ige stands as a loss, even though the general fan and media consensus was that he won. What’s more, the featherweight division is jam-packed with hungry contenders who have been on a tear.

Where does he go from here?

A viable match-up for Edson Barboza would be a bout against Yair Rodriguez. Yair seemingly can’t seem to secure a fight against Zabit Magomedsharipov and could easily divert his attention. What’s more, it serves as a wild and exciting stand-up war that can be the main event for any Fight Night card.

Edson Barboza could also consider a rematch against Dan Ige, which could be put a definitive end to their controversial first meeting. ‘50k’ Ige has shown an interest in a rematch and despite his loss to Calvin Kattar, he could be Edson’s clear path to UFC gold. Top contenders such as Max Holloway, Brian Ortega, and ‘The Korean Zombie’ are much closer to the top that Edson at the moment.

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