Sean Shelby’s Shoes: What’s next for Valentina Shevchenko and UFC on ESPN+ 14’s other key winners?

After every event, fans wonder whom the winners will be matched up with next.

And with another night of UFC action in the rearview mirror, it’s time to look forward, put on a pair of Sean Shelby and Mick Maynard’s shoes, and play UFC matchmaker for UFC on ESPN+ 14’s most noteworthy winning fighters.

Those winners include Valentina Shevchenko (18-3 MMA, 7-2 UFC), who defended the UFC women’s flyweight title with a unanimous decision victory over Liz Carmouche (13-7 MMA, 5-5 UFC) in the main event at Antel Arena in Montevideo, Uruguay, as well as Vicente Luque (17-6-1 MMA, 10-2 UFC), Volkan Oezdemir (16-4 MMA, 4-3 UFC) and Marina Rodriguez (13-0-1 MMA, 2-0-1 UFC).

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Marina Rodriguez

Should fight: Cortney Casey
Why they should fight: Rodriguez graduated from being a promising new face in the strawweight division to being a potential contender to watch after she defeated one of the more respected names at 115 pounds in Tecia Torres.

Not only did Rodriguez beat Torres, but she did it without losing a round on any scorecard, which certainly gives some extra juice to her triumph. The Brazilian hasn’t lost in more than four years as a pro, and with consecutive wins over Torres and Jessica Aguilar, it’s time for Rodriguez to get a real step up.

The problem for her, however, is that most of the ranked names at strawweight are booked. Casey (8-7 MMA, 4-6 UFC) is available, though, and while “Cast Iron” may not have the most impressive record, she has shared the cage with almost all of the top names in the weight class and rarely gives up a loss easily. That’s just the opponent Rodriguez needs.

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