Arnold Allen is bigger than willing to utilize the fights few different featherweights want.
That’s evident once more at UFC 297, as Allen takes on undefeated contender Movsar Evloev in this Saturday’s pay-per-survey opener. It’s not a matchup many substitute 145-pounders in the UFC could possibly perchance be overjoyed to just assemble, particularly one as extremely ranked as Allen, alternatively the 29-365 days-venerable Englishman is excited to provide Evloev his chance to fight up the ladder.
“Fully, I’d be hiding in a gap if I wasn’t chilly with it,” Allen acknowledged on The MMA Hour. “I shapely fought Max Holloway — he’s a frightening dude, a few of the she’s achieved to different opponents. Whereas you occur to mark his highlights, yeah, you don’t are looking out to be that man when he’s screaming in your face, announcing, ‘I’m the finest boxer,’ and slipping your punches. That’s frightening. So I’m down the fight anybody. I feel about in my skills, my instruments. And never in a manner [of fighting just] for a paycheck — I feel about I will beat anybody, so I feel about in myself.”
Allen heads into UFC 297 hoping to rebound from the first loss of his octagon occupation. His competitive unanimous decision setback to broken-down champion Max Holloway this previous April halted an eight-365 days hot lumber that saw Allen purchase his first 10 UFC appearances and attain the precipice of title rivalry following his 2015 promotional debut.
It change into once a not easy pill to swallow for Allen, particularly as a fighter who watch the prolonged avenue to rivalry when put next with different contemporary UFC challengers adore Ilia Topuria and Sean O’Malley, nonetheless Allen has no regrets about his performance in opposition to one of the most division’s all-time finest.
“I have the preparation went as successfully because it could possibly possibly perchance’ve. And the regrets [were from] issues out of my administration,” Allen acknowledged. “The final issues, the tangibles, the final issues that I could possibly perchance originate, I did as finest I will. My teammates had been sizable, the camp change into once not seemingly. And, successfully, that wasn’t [true, but] the final issues I will administration, I gave 100 percent. I didn’t let myself down in that manner. My crew had been sizable. It shapely is what it’s a long way. Sure issues performed out the manner they performed out.”
“I’m a firm believer, if you settle to want to be the finest on the planet, you’ve got gotten got to beat the finest on the planet. Stunning?” Allen continued. “And once you originate, the finest is ‘Blessed.’ Max is the No. 2 man. On the other hand you watch at rankings or whatever, he is. In case that you just can perchance’t beat Max, that you just can perchance’t be champion, in my thoughts. So that’s the litmus test. And for me, obviously, I failed the test — and I assemble a chance to head once more, and utilize a watch at and rebuild and assemble relieve there.”
Allen now gets the chance to reestablish himself in the title mix in opposition to a feared up-and-comer adore Evloev. The 29-365 days-venerable Russian is already a supreme 6-0 in the UFC.
With Alexander Volkanovski defending his title in opposition to Topuria on Feb. 17 at UFC 297, the winner of Saturday’s bout could possibly perchance be in pole mumble to self-discipline for the belt next.
“He’s very appropriate. Very appropriate athlete, very appropriate fighter,” Allen acknowledged of Evloev. “He improves every matchup, gets better every time he’s out. So I’m sure he’s going to assemble even better from his final final [fight] to this one. So positively, he’s positively impressed me.
“That’s precisely why I change into once bigger than joyful for this fight. He’s an undefeated man, a quantity of noise around him, folks are hyping him up. So I’m going to utilize that undefeated file and effect myself correct relieve in there.”
UFC 297 takes mumble Jan. 20 at the Scotiabank Arena in Toronto.