What began as a rumor has turned out to be true. Cage Warriors champion and highly touted prospect Paddy Pimblett has officially signed with the Ultimate Fighting Championship.
At 26 years old, Pimblett has garnered quite the support within the MMA community for the skills that he has shown in the cage. Not only did he win the Cage Warriors featherweight title, but he was on his way to winning the lightweight strap as well, although he did fall short.
Nevertheless, he has bounced back with some impressive performances. After his most recent win over Davide Martinez, it seemed like he could be bound for the UFC, with him calling for it to happen himself.
Paddy Pimblett Signs With The UFC
There were some initial rumors that Paddy Pimblett was signing with the UFC. This came after his name appeared on the official fan rankings system that the UFC has on their website, but at the time there was nothing confirmed.
Now it seems that this has changed, as according to a post to the UFC Europe Instagram page, which was then followed up by a confirmation from Paddy “The Baddy,” he has officially signed with the UFC.
“The worst kept secret ever is finally out, man is officially a @ufc fighter what do yous know abar it 😎🤗” Pimblett wrote.
Now at the time of writing, there is no word as to when Paddy will debut, or who his opponent may be. That being said, there are few signings to the UFC in recent memory, that have had so much anticipation behind them before the news was even officially announced, so you can bet that he will be taking on a big name.
Reacting To The News
This is obviously massive new for Paddy Pimblett, but it was not the first time he got the offer for a UFC contract. He just turned it down previously, feeling that he was not quite ready to make that leap.
Now he feels ready to go, and speaking in an interview shortly after the news broke, he explained the elated feeling of signing with the UFC. He says that it was well worth the wait to now feel like he can take on anyone,.
“I know where I’m destined to be, and I know where the end goal is, and I know what I’m going to do in this sport. I’m going to achieve things other people haven’t, and only a certain few names have,” Pimblett said.
“When I was 21, I was so glad I didn’t take the offer, and again when I was 23 and 24 because I wasn’t ready. As good as I thought I was then, if 26 year old me now… fought 21 year old Paddy the Baddy, he doesn’t get out the first round. It’s that simple.”
Pimblett goes on to explain that he is not sure if he is going to compete at featherweight or lightweight, nor when he will make that debut. As far as who he wants to face, he is open to anyone.
“I just want to fight. It’d be funny if I got someone else who it was their first UFC fight, a debut as well, because it’ll effect them a lot more than it would me. I’m used to coming out and fighting in main events, it’s nothing new. I’ve gone 25 minutes three times.”
Paddy Pimblett has shown that his game is far from complete, but he has been working and improving in every aspect of his skillset. It will be interesting to see how this translates in the big leagues, now that he is set to compete in the UFC.