HW - Curtis Blaydes 8-1 (1)
Curtis had the unfortunate luck of being the guy to welcome Francis Ngannou to the UFC. Since then he's been on a tare. Four wins in 2017 with one being taken away for weed. In a division of older guys Curtis might just be a couple wins away from getting that Francis rematch.
LHW - OSP 22-10
OSP has come the closest of anyone yet in the UFC to beating Volkan dropping a split-decision to him. After that he won three fights in a row in 2017 all by stoppage. OSP is fast approaching another shot at one of the top guys.
MW - Derek Brunson 18-5
After a bad start to 2017 with a truly terrible fight with Anderson Silva, Derek has now got himself back on track. Back to back first round knockouts to close out 2017 and now a rematch with Souza that if he wins will surely get him a title shot.
WW - Santiago Ponzinibbio 26-3
This was a hard one as a lot of current Welterweights are already tipped for a big 2018. Santiago is the one that I think slips under the radar. The guy is on a six fight win streak in the UFC and this year he got some big wins like top 15 ranked Gunnar Nelson and popular prospect Mike Perry.
LW - James Vick 12-1
The Lightweight division in such a mess with the three top guys all needing to fight that I don't think anybody else gets a look at a title shot this year. So 2018 is Vick's year to establish himself as a contender to be ready for whoever has the belt in 2019.
FW - Josh Emmett 13-1
Thanks to a crazy situation Josh found himself with a golden opportunity, a fight against a top 5 ranked Lamas and he took it. After Holloway vs. Edgar there isn't really a clear next contender. With just one or two wins Josh can make himself that contender.
BW - Jimmie Rivera 21-1
I feel a little bad for Jimmy even being on this list when he should be fighting for the tile next. But again I feel like with the DJ vs. TJ fight you won't see the Bantamweight title defender till likely late 2018. So Jimmie just needs to keep active and he's got to be next in line.
FLW - Matheus Nicolau 13-1-1
In a division where the champion has beaten pretty much everybody sometimes twice its hard to find a new exciting challenge. In his first two UFC fights he's beaten a former title challenger and a top 15 guy. With such few contenders Nicolau could jump the queue with and impressive win or two.
WBW - Aspen Ladd 6-0
2017 was good for the UFC newcomer Ladd. She picked up a win against Eubanks who was supposed to fight for the Flyweight title and finished Lina Lansberg. She's still to face the top level completion but I fancy her to have a lot of success on 2018.
WSW - Felice Herrig 14-6
After a mixed start to her UFC career Felice is now off and running on a four fight win streak and has had a great 2017 with three of the wins coming then to set her up for a big next year. Felice has to be on the verge of a top 5 fight.