Matchmaking Marlon Vera, Benoit Saint-Denis, other UFC 299 losers

Marlon Vera, Benoit Saint-Denis and other UFC 299 fighters suffered losses on Saturday night. Here's who we think these main card fighters should fight next to get back in the win column.

Sean O'Malley and Marlon Vera
Sean O'Malley and Marlon Vera / GIORGIO VIERA/GettyImages
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UFC 299 is in the books.

In the main event, Sean O'Malley avenged his 2020 TKO loss to Marlon Vera, retaining the bantamweight title by a dominant unanimous decision. The scorecards read 50-45, 50-45, and 50-44 - perhaps best punctuated by a booming knee in the second round that rocked the challenger.

Meanwhile, Dustin Poirier silenced the detractors who had been claiming that he had seen better days and should retire with a massive second-round knockout of Benoit Saint-Denis, who at the time was being touted as a future contender. It was not easy, however, as the French prospect had him in various precarious positions twice, attempting a rear-naked choke/neck crank and armbar. But once Poirier found his timing on the feet, he uncorked a left hand that downed Saint-Denis, then finished the job with a right

Elsewhere, Michael "Venom" Page finally made his Octagon debut against Kevin Holland and won. Despite a rough second round that saw him taken down and controlled on the ground, the British former Bellator stalwart clinched the other two rounds thanks to his crisp and effective striking.

Jack Della Maddalena solidified himself as a top title contender with a monstrous third-round knockout of former title challeng Gilbert Burns. After being taken down thrice in the first two rounds, the Australian tapped into his killer instinct and reversed another takedown into a brutal knee, before dropping punches to seal the deal.

And finally, Petr Yan ended his slump with a unanimous decision over the fast-rising Yadong Song. The former bantamweight champion had not been seen since dropping a unanimous decision to Merab Dvalishvili almost a year ago; but he was stellar in his return, thwarting his opponent's takedown attempts and outlanding him on the feet.

Obviously, while the winners will get to savor their hard-fought triumph, the losers will be left licking their wounds. Here is how they should regroup.