Sean Shelby’s Shoes: What’s next for Edmen Shahbazyan after UFC on ESPN+ 31 loss?

(ALSO SEE: Sean Shelby’s Shoes: What’s next for Derek Brunson after UFC on ESPN+ 31 win?)

The hype around Edmen Shahbazyan took a hard hit on Saturday when one of the sport’s most highly touted prospects took his first loss in the UFC on ESPN+ 31 main event.

Shahbazyan (11-1 MMA, 4-1 UFC) was unable to overcome the veteran savvy of Derek Brunson (21-7 MMA, 12-5 UFC) in the middleweight headliner and ultimately succumbed to a third-round TKO in the bout, which took place at UFC Apex in Las Vegas and streamed on ESPN+.

Although Shahbazyan showed some promising moments throughout the fight, he could not find a way to top Brunson. The 22-year-old’s ambition of becoming youngest UFC champ in history is now in serious jeopardy, but is there a way to salvage the situation?

Perhaps a matchup with former top contender Kelvin Gastelum (15-6 MMA, 10-6 UFC), who looks vulnerable after three consecutive losses? Or is that not the right move?

Watch the video above for thoughts and analysis on Shahbazyan’s future coming out of UFC on ESPN+ 31.

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