PAUL REDMOND IS hoping to feature on the bill when the Ultimate Fighting Championship returns to Dublin in the autumn.
UFC Fight Night 77 will take place at the 3Arena on Saturday, 24 October, with three bouts — including the main event between Joseph Duffy and Dustin Poirier — already announced.
However, Redmond has yet to hear anything about a potential spot on the card for the UFC’s third visit to the Irish capital.
In fact, the 28-year-old featherweight still isn’t certain about his place on the UFC roster after his defeat to Robert Whiteford last month. It was Redmond’s second consecutive loss, having made a late-notice debut against Mirsad Bektic in Stockholm back in January.
“I’m concerned because I’m 0-2 in the UFC,” Redmond told The42. “I know I took the first fight on short notice but this is business for the UFC. I genuinely thought I was going to be cut after the last fight but I haven’t heard anything yet so I’m still unsure.”
His UFC record may make for unpleasant reading at the moment but Redmond’s introduction to life in MMA’s largest organisation has been far from easy.
Bektic is being tipped by many as a potential future champion and Whiteford was the first Scottish fighter to compete in a UFC bout in Scotland, so Redmond was up against his opponent and a sold-out arena full of 10,000-plus Scottish fans.
But Redmond is the last man you’ll find who’ll make excuses for his two defeats so far in 2015. In his view, he only has himself — and not short training camps, difficult weight-cuts or intimidating atmospheres — to blame.
“A lot of people have said that it could have been an easier start but that’s not how I look at it all,” said Redmond. “The atmosphere in Glasgow, there were a lot of people booing me and all that but that genuinely didn’t have any impact on me whatsoever.
“I had prepared well and I took it all in my stride. The place erupted as soon as he [Whiteford] walked out but the fans made no difference to me. I ran at him as soon as the fight started and I thought I was winning it up until I got hit.
“People can also say I took it on short notice but the Bektic fight was pathetic. Pathetic to watch. Nobody wants to watch pure shite like that. It was horrible.”
Nevertheless, fans who watched Redmond rise through the Cage Warriors ranks over the course of his impressive 7-1 stint with the organisation will know that he has much more to offer than his time in the UFC so far would suggest.
The Team Ryano fighter, a stablemate of UFC flyweight Neil Seery who also trains under Andy Ryan at the Finglas gym, was snapped up by the UFC earlier this year thanks to his entertaining style which has seen him take all but one of his 10 professionals wins by stoppage.
A toe-hold win has been seen just once before in the UFC — when Frank Mir defeated Tank Abbott in 2003 — yet three of Redmond’s last five victories have come via the unique submission, which is a good indication of what the Dubliner is capable of bringing to the table if given another opportunity.
In an ideal world, that will come at UFC Fight Night 77 in October but as long as he gets the chance, Redmond isn’t too concerned about the venue.
He said: “Dublin would be huge for me. A lot of people want to fight in Vegas but Dublin would be my Vegas. I was there when Neil [Seery] fought last year and it was incredible. I’ve driven past that arena hundreds of times and it would mean a lot to fight there.
“But, look, I’m here to fight and it doesn’t matter where. Put me on the smallest card in the outback in Australia and the aim is still the same: to win. Regardless of whether I’m on the Dublin card or not, all I know is that I’ll be going out to win this next fight. It doesn’t matter where it is, it’s about getting the right result.”
Originally published at 14.06