Brendan Allen is less than three weeks removed from having his hand raised inside the octagon, but his sights are already firmly set on his next bout.

Allen (18-5 MMA, 6-2 UFC) picked up a second-round submission win over Sam Alvey at UFC Fight Night 200 on Feb. 5 in a bout he accepted on just four days’ notice. It put him back in the win column after falling victim to an upset against Chris Curtis at UFC on ESPN 31 in December, and opened up some options of the future.

The 26-year-old who trains out of Sanford MMA in Florida expects to be back in the octagon this summer, he said, but it’s just a matter of finalizing the opponent. Two men are the apparent frontrunners, Allen revealed, with a rematch against Eryk Anders (14-6 MMA, 6-6 UFC) – who beat him by unanimous decision at LFA 14 in June 2017 – or Jacob Malkoun (6-1 MMA, 2-1 UFC).

“I feel like me and Eryk Anders have a little unfinished business from back in the day,” Allen told MMA Junkie. “I have a little chip on my shoulder with that because we were young, he beat me by decision but I almost finished him with like 10 seconds left, five seconds left or whatever the hell it was. But that was a long time ago and I’m a totally different person now.

“So that name was one for me. Malkoun was another one for me. Jacob Malkoun was another one. I felt like he’s just kind of boring man. He tries to do a little ground-and-pound, but it’s not good. He hugs guys. He hugs guys for decisions and he got knocked out by my boy Phil (Hawes). So I’m trying to give him a little release.”

Allen said he will happily take on whomever the UFC ultimately decided to pair him against. He’s more concerned about activity and gaining experience at this point, and Allen is confident he can circle the calendar for the UFC’s June 11 event, which yas yet to be officially announced.

“I think we’re looking at June 11,” Allen said. “think that’s what we’re looking at. I haven’t received any contracts or anything like that. I think we’re just waiting on a name. I think we’re close to one of those three – or one of those two. Anders or Malkoun. Either way, I’m coming with something a little bit different.”

Whatever the name ends up being, Allen said the fight will unfold at middleweight. He bumped up to 205 pounds for the short-notice fight with Alvey, and although Allen enjoyed that experience and expects to come back one day, he said he has more to do before closing the door on his usual weight class.

“I’ve got some loose ends to tie up at ’85, then eventually I’ll go up,” Allen said. “But I’ll do it the right way. I’ll put on the right muscle to make the cut. I have the stature, it’s just putting on the muscle and things like that. But if I do that I’m not going to ’85 anymore, because ’85 isn’t an easy cut for me. That’s the main reason I’ve never taken a short notice fight at ’85 before.”

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