Natal’s hope of making a run at the title in 2014 ended this week with a resounding thud when Tim Kennedy KO’d him in the opening round of the evening’s main event. Prior to the defeat, he’d won a trio of tilts, so there’s no reason to think Natal can’t get back on track with the right opponent. Since he’ll need some time off to recover from the effects of being blasted into orbit, Natal is likely to receive one of the many middleweights slated for competition in the coming months rather than a 185er currently twiddling his thumbs. Candidates include Thales Leites, Ed Herman, Uriah Hall, and Chris Leben.
With no Draws on display, UFC Fight Night 31 produced two clearly defined groups of fighters based on success in the Octagon or lack thereof. The show featured eight finishes including five of the first-frame variety in addition to some well-scored decisions. While the event wasn’t necessarily the end of the road for every individual who came up short, few jobs are guaranteed when it comes to defeat on the sport’s biggest stage. Here’s a look at what might be next for some of the card’s less-fortunate folks… (Photos by USA Today Sports Images)
Front-Page Photo Credit: Joshua Lindsey-USA TODAY Sports