Terrance McKinney is scheduled to fight this month at UFC 283, which serves as the promotion’s return to Brazil, but if the turmoil in Brazil forces the event to be cancelled, McKinney won’t be completely heartbroken.
The highly-touted lightweight up-and-comer is set to face Ismael Bonfim at the UFC’s first pay-per-view event of the year, which takes place Jan. 21 in Rio de Janeiro. Currently, Brazil is in the middle of political chaos after thousands of supporters of former Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro stormed the country’s Congress, Supreme Court, and presidential palace on Sunday following the swearing in of new president Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva.
While there has been no sign of the UFC calling an audible for the event, McKinney says he has a backup plan in his mind if the political situation affects UFC 283.
“There’s a lot of chaos out there,” McKinney said on The MMA Hour.
“[I’m concerned they might cancel the card] a little bit, but I wouldn’t mind because we all know I need to knock that scouser [Paddy Pimblett] out. If that’s what God has in mind, let his will be done.”
McKinney has been calling for a fight with “The Baddy” for quite some time, and he is among the vast majority of people who believes Gordon deserved to get his hand raised.
“I saw his last fight — he lost,” McKinney said of Pimblett. “I think [it was] 29-28 Jared. I’d give [Pimblett] one round, maybe just give him one round. That’s just being honest.
“The way he blocked Jared’s punches with his chin, it was very impressive.”
Pimblett was incredibly confident he won the fight following his performance and even said that he “coasted” in the third round after, in his mind, winning the first two.
McKinney certainly noticed the defiance of Pimblett after one of the most debated decision wins in recent memory.
“Man, that’s crazy. He must’ve been hanging out with Sean O’Malley, or something.” McKinney explained. “He must think he’s still undefeated.”
As of now, McKinney has his mind on Bonfim at UFC 283, and plans to take another step towards getting into the rankings of, arguably, the UFC’s toughest division.
Should he be victorious, McKinney feels as if the UFC will give him his wish to face Pimblett next — possibly as early as UFC 286 on March 18.
“I think they get it done after this fight for sure,” McKinney said. “And [I’d be] cutting weight two times, super close together. This is his best chance to ever beat me.
“I’ve just been hearing a little bit through the grapevine, and I think it’s next. It would definitely be in March, and if I don’t get Paddy, we want a ranked opponent in April.
“[It would] just be domination everywhere,” McKinney added. “I saw Jared out-wrestle him, he couldn’t really get any submissions off, and I’ve got a bigger frame. I’m faster. So yeah, I see him getting killed, a lot of people looking sad — the UFC, Dana sad — me getting a bigger check. I see a lot of good things happening after I take him out in the first round. Then they’ll have to promote me, and I think I’m the right prospect to invest in.”