Paddy Pimblett has silenced any doubts Dana White may have had about him.
Before signing with UFC in 2013, Pimblett had been one of the most prominent MMA stars outside of the organisation. He was often compared to Conor McGregor, a former champion at Cage Warriors featherweight. After making a successful UFC debut this past September, Pimblett asked for a fight in England to prove his ability to “blow the roof off the gaff,” and Pimblett did just that, securing a first-round comeback victory and setting the UFC London crowd off in raucous excitement.
Now, UFC President is not doubting “The Baddy .”
“This week I was getting tired of hearing, ‘Oh, wait til you see his walkout, wait til you see this and that.’ I was like, I want to see him fight. White stated this at UFC London’s post-fight press conference. He did it, and did so spectacularly. He returned when he got in trouble and won the fight.
” I’ll show you an example. Yesterday, on my Instagram, the faceoffs for the heavyweight bout [Aspinall vs. Volkov]. were posted. Did 120,000 views. Paddy’s faceoff did 1. 3 million. So all the talk going into the fight about his walkout and all this s***, listen, it’s real. This kid’s got a ton of hype behind him and tonight he showed everybody that he’s the real deal.”
Pimblett certainly believes himself to be just that. After his win, Pimblett said that he deserves to be in main events and that he could sell out a stadium show with ease.
On the latter point, White was less interested, but he does believe that Pimblett is now a main event fighter.
“I don’t know. His numbers are positive. His numbers say yes. He could headline a Fight Night,” White said.
“It’s just one of those things. … It’s just like [Sean] O’Malley. O’Malley pulls big numbers. A few Contender Series guys have made big money. This is the easiest way to describe it. You can see some of these men from the Contenders Series and you can see that they either go straight to pay-per view, we headline them, or are in high-ranking positions at Fight Nights. Paddy is definitely one of those guys that could be one.”