DALLAS, TX - MARCH 14: A detail of gloves worn by Anthony Pettis and Rafael dos Anjos in the Lightweight Title bout during the UFC 185 event at American Airlines Center on March 14, 2015 in Dallas, Texas. (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
The UFC is constantly looking for new talent from all over the globe. We take a look at five fighters from Europe fighting in the UK and Ireland MMA Scene who are just a couple fights away from getting signed by the UFC.
The MMA scene in Europe got a huge boost in recent days as it was announced that coinciding with the return of Cage Warriors, the promotion has signed a deal to be aired on UFC Fight Pass. This gives every fighter an extra bit of motivation as their fights are available around the world and broadcast on the biggest platform for MMA fans. Add to this the fact that this essentially makes Cage Warriors a feeder promotion for the UFC.
So lets take a look at five fighters who have been impressing as of late and may just be getting a call up soon.
Dylan ‘The Nuke’ Tuke (2-0, Featherweight)
While relatively young in the sport at just 19 years old, Dylan Tuke has been extremely impressive in his opening two bouts of his professional career. Dylan spoke about his career thus far and where he sees himself going.
“I’ve being training MMA just about 8 years now. I started when I was 12 and moved to SBG when I was 16. Going to SBG and meeting John was a big turning point. He’s an amazing coach. He’s honestly a technician, nobody does it better. The likes of Ais “The Bash” Daly and Paddy “The Hooligan” Holohan made my life a lot easier, both training wise and outside life. I’m lucky to have met the people I have. And not to mention HOT ROD Owen Roddy and Chris “The Killing” Fields , them men put a lot of time into me at the very start!”
“My motivation is to be the best ever. That’s it. Until I’m that, I’m not happy with my career.”
“I wouldn’t mind having a shot off Chad Mendes somewhere along the line.”
“I think I’m a bad match up for all of them!!”
Hoping to get a fight at Bamma on June 4, the UFC may just be a few fights away for the charismatic SBGi prospect who has finished both opponents so far in the first round.
Jack ‘The Joker’ Hermansson (12-2, Middleweight)
Currently the Cage Warriors Middleweight Champion, Hermansson defended his belt in the Main Event of the CWFC 75, live on Fight Pass. With 11 finishes in his 12 wins Hermansson certainly knows how to fight, and he has been really putting it together over the last couple of years with seven wins in a row.
The middleweight had a short lived stint for Bellator three years ago, losing his only two fights under the Bellator banner and failing to pick up a win. He has improved markedly since then and is looking for another shot at the big time. with the addition of CWFC to Fight Pass and with several middleweights being popped for banned substances, Hermansson will like his chances of getting signed, as the UFC looks to breed new life into the middleweight division.
Brian ‘The Pikeman’ Moore (9-4, Featherweight)
With a record of 9-4, Moore often gets over-looked as a prospect, but the record is unflattering to the Wexford native who trains out of SBGi under John Kavanagh. With a loss to Mike Wilkinson, recently released by the UFC, Moore was the first man to take Wilkinson to a decision. Another loss was when ‘The Pikeman’ took on Marat Pekov at Bantamweight, a fight which Moore again showed his heart after opting to continuing fighting after taking an illegal blow which cut him open badly.
Moore recently beat the highly touted Tommy McCafferty with a third round submission after coming back from an 18 month hiatus. Another victory followed with a thoroughly exciting performance at Bamma 24, beating Mick Brennan in the first round. With another few wins Moore would certainly warrant a crack at the big time.
Paddy ‘The Baddy’ Pimblett (10-1, Featherweight)
Yet another Featherweight, the Liverpool native Paddy Pimblett has been making waves in the UK for a few years now. He believes his efforts already warrant a call up and he doesn’t believe that he will need to win a title to get signed. In his most recent bout, Pimblett beat veteran Ashleigh Grimshaw by unanimous decision.
At just 21 ‘The Baddy’ looks the real deal. Pimblett spoke to SevereMMA after the fight. Check out the interview below:
Tom ‘Fire Kid’ Duquesnoy (12-1, 1 n/c, Featherweight)
Another featherweight, Duquesnoy seems to be making the move down to bantamweight after beating Damien Rooney at Bamma 24. The current featherweight Champion looks to emulate the achievements of a certain Conor McGregor as he gets set to take on Shay Walsh for the Bantamweight Title in his next bout.
Certainly one to watch for the future, Duquesnoy is unbeaten in nine fights and has nine finishes in his 12 wins. If he wins the Bantamweight Title expect to see him plying his trade in the UFC very soon, most likely at Bantamweight, where he would fancy his chances of climbing the rankings very quickly.