The lightweight spoke candidly about his win over Joseph Duffy at UFC 217.
Vick, who now boasts a record of 12-1 following his TKO victory over ‘Irish’ Joe Duffy last weekend, is both ambitious and realistic. Speaking on The MMA Hour to Ariel Helwani, he conveyed these traits in spades.
While berating the top 15 ranked fighters of the lightweight division for dodging him and his impressive record plus his massive 6′ 3″ frame, The ‘Texecutioner’ was also grounded in realising that calling out division champion Conor McGregor was futile at this juncture.
The eloquent 30-year-old continued in this vein in discussing how he conquered the 17-3 Duffy.
The contest was hard-fought in the first round, with Duffy gaining the slight edge. The Donegal man slowed down in the second though, allowing his opponent to get off strikes, including the telling blow which he landed just seven seconds from the bell.
— UFC Europe (@UFCEurope) November 5, 2017
While speaking highly of Duffy’s credentials, Vick revealed that his style was there to be exploited.
“It was close [the first round]. I felt like I did more damage because I had cut him already in a couple of different spots,” he told Helwani around 70 minutes in.
“But he was throwing enough volume that I thought I might have lost it. The corner told me to use the jab, if I unload the hands I can hit him whenever I want. The movement was giving him problems.
“I study a lot of film. I saw all the front attacks. The knee, the front kick, the uppercut. He stands real heavy with the good boxing base and keeps his chin tucked real well, but that’s not going to help him against my knee or whatever coming up the middle. I knew that those middle attacks would be open. I kept feinting the knees and faking him out, and then going for them, but never committing to any of them.”
Vick then discussed the finishing blow, which some people felt heralded an early stoppage, and how he saw his opportunity arise.
James Vick uses a pawing jab to blind Joe Duffy, who changes levels to peer around it–right into a huge uppercut. pic.twitter.com/2KtKoO0Ldb
— Connor Ruebusch (@BoxingBusch) November 6, 2017
“I knew that I had won that round, and I heard my corner saying about 15 or 20 seconds from time that I had outpointed him pretty badly.
“I started circling, and I knew that he was coming in to try and land something big and try to steal that round. I figured it was going to be a right hand because that’s his money punch. I was like ‘alright, I’m gonna throw it and beat him to the punch.
“I heard the clapper and he came in and I threw it. I saw his eyes roll back and he was in a very bad way. I considered not even following up.”