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Jimmy Flick explains UFC comeback, puts flyweights on notice: ‘I didn’t retire the right way’

UFC Fight Night Flick v Durden
Jimmy Flick is coming back to the UFC.
Photo by Cooper Neill/Zuffa LLC

Jimmy Flick is officially back in the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency testing pool and on the road to a UFC return.

As MMA Fighting first reported, Flick recently informed the UFC about his intention to return to competition following a surprise retirement announcement in April 2021, which came four months after he opened eyes with his stunning flying triangle submission of Cody Durden in his octagon debut.

On Thursday, Flick confirmed he will compete in the UFC the first chance he gets.

“We’re back, and we’re in USADA,” Flick told MMA Fighting. “I’ll be getting drug tested soon, and it will be up to six months before I return, but your boy ain’t doing nothing. All of my drug tests have been clean, they’ll continue to be clean, so hopefully the UFC likes that. The flyweights have a lot of buzz, and it’s about to have some more buzz. I think they’re going to try and get me back in there as soon as possible.”

Back in April 2021, Flick went in-depth on the reasoning behind his decision to retire — for his family and the lack of benefits provided to MMA fighters, amongst other things.

Unfortunately, Flick said he is now separated from his wife, but he wants to make his daughters proud by attacking his goals.

When the UFC caught wind of his potential return, the former LFA champion said the promotion may have been as excited as he was.

“[UFC matchmaker] Mick Maynard has always supported me, he helped get me on the Contender Series and into the UFC, and he understood my retirement,” Flick explained. “He was the one who had one of the UFC employees reach out to me personally to let me know they wanted me back in USADA immediately, and they were very happy that I was interested [in coming back]. It just motivated me more.

“I just started training again a week ago. A month ago, I wasn’t doing anything. I don’t know how long it will take for the UFC to get me back in there, but I only need two months — I don’t think I even need two months, I just love this stuff. I strive for this stuff. I’m finding my happy place.

“To make it short and sweet, I quit for my family, and at the end of the day, you’ve got to be happy,” Flick continued. “I ended up leaving the job I was at for five years for more money, but it wasn’t what I wanted. At the end of the day, we want to be happy — my girls want to be happy, the person I was with wants to be happy, and that’s what we’re doing. We’re moving forward to be happy. We have different goals in life, and now I can pursue new goals.

“My UFC career is no longer on hold, and I want to be the biggest thing to come out of Sand Springs, Okla., and I want to leave a legacy for my girls.”

Flick believes Francisco Figueiredo should have first right of refusal on welcoming him back to the octagon since they were slated to compete prior to his retirement announcement. The 31-year-old has been watching the division since his absence and is more than fine with facing anyone the UFC has to offer. There is one name Flick hopes to cross paths with.

“The division is already on notice,” Flick asked. “Who wouldn’t want to be my first fight coming back? I’m bluntly telling people I have not been training, but I wake up and I piss excellence when it comes to the UFC. I love this s***. I have a work ethic that’s unstoppable, and nobody’s stopping me now.

“I don’t care who I fight, but I do know who I’ll be coming after 100 percent, and that will be Tim Elliott. I feel like I have to get one win under me before I can get that fight. He had said some stuff about me retiring and how it could’ve been somebody else’s contract. Well then go get it, because apparently they just put mine on hold. I’m back. I’m here. The UFC accepts it, and that’s all that matters.”

As important as legacy is to the 21-fight pro, being able to give himself and his team a UFC world title belt would be an amazing accomplishment.

“Honestly, [the goal is] just leaving a legacy and leaving something behind with my skill set,” Flick said. “I just want to leave something for the fans, get some more chapters for the book I wanted to write. I’m an undefeated UFC fighter, but I didn’t establish my brand the way I would’ve liked to. You have guys like Conor McGregor coming out with whiskey, you have other guys coming out with clothing lines, they have endorsements that set these guys up and they don’t necessarily have to fight all the time.

“But I just want to know that when I’m done, that I can actually put my gloves down in the cage like I’m supposed to and retire the right way. I didn’t retire the right way. I didn’t think I was going to come out retirement because I was settled with the way it went down. If I was going to be with my family the rest of my life, I was fine with it. Now, it’s still for my family, but it’s for my girls, for me, the Flick name.

“And, yes, the UFC gold is what I’m looking at. That’s what started this whole thing: I put out a screenshot of a meme my coach put out in 2019. First time training with him, we had a kickboxing fight, he said, ‘Jimmy, we’ll dominate that kickboxing fight.’ I fought for the LFA title, he said, ‘Jimmy’s going to win that title,’ I won that title. Not only did I win that title, I put my name in the history books with a 38-second finish — second fastest behind Brandon Royval. Then I go to [Dana White’s] Contender Series, he said I’m going to win that contract, I won that contract, and then [he said] Jimmy’s going to become the UFC champion.

“Everything on that list has been checked off but that one. Now, I have the chance to check that one off and solidify Jimmy ‘The Brick’ Flick.”

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