Saturday's UFC Fight Night 210 event is in the books, and now that the dust has settled in Las Vegas, it's time to go to the scorecard to see who the big winners were at the UFC Apex.
1. Gregory Rodrigues
My purpose with this column isn't necessarily to talk about the biggest wins of a recent card, but the fighters who we were talking about a few days later. And I know I was talking about Gregory Rodrigues on Monday morning after his come from behind victory over Chidi Njokuani in the UFC Fight Night 210 co-main event. Dealing with a gnarly cut and trying to get his bearings back while one of the middleweight division's most potent finishers was chasing him, Rodrigues found a way back into the fight and then finished it a round later, not only earning himself a third UFC post-fight bonus but placing him in that select category of competitors you simply can't miss. If you don't love watching “Robocop” fight, you're not a fight fan.
2. Damon Jackson
Damon Jackson's win over Pat Sabatini would have been a big one regardless of the circumstances surrounding it. For the Texan to do it just days after the untimely passing of his brother, that's a whole feat in and of itself. And while there will always be a hint of sadness around memories of the emotional win, in strict fighting terms, Jackson – now winner of four in a row and six of his last seven – made a big leap forward last Saturday, and he's most certainly a player in a stacked weight class.
3. Cory Sandhagen
With his win over Song Yadong in last weekend's main event, Cory Sandhagen continues to not just cement his place as one of the top bantamweights on the planet, but one of the most intriguing. Able to do it all in the octagon, Sandhagen has the goods to beat anyone at 135 pounds on any given night, and he's proven it. Now he just needs to pull it all together when it's all on the line in a title fight to get over the hump and take a belt home to Colorado. As for a fight with Marlon Vera? I'm all in for that.
4. Joe Pyfer
Be Joe Pyfer. It's the catchphrase of 2022 in the MMA world, and Pyfer did it again on Saturday, with an emphatic knockout of Alen Amedovski that allowed him to break in his UFC contract in style. That power is something special, and when you add in that he's now working with Daniel Gracie and John Marquez' gang of killers in Philly, he's going to be a fighter to watch in a middleweight division where he can move fast if he keeps winning.
5. Loma Lookboonmee
It took a lot for Loma Lookboonmee to make it to Las Vegas last weekend for her fight against Denise Gomes, and it had nothing to do with the flight from Thailand. Depression, questions about her fighting future, and suicidal thoughts all flooded her mind after her November 2021 loss to Loopy Godinez, but thankfully, she got the help and support she needed from her friends, family and team, and when the call came to return and face Gomes, she was ready to go and she delivered with an impressive three-round victory. Welcome back, Loma – you were missed!
This story first published at UFC.com.