Ilir Latifi remains confident that he will have success at heavyweight.
When it was announced he would make the move up to heavyweight to take on Derrick Lewis at UFC 247 it had mixed views. Some thought he should be dropping down in weight instead. Others thought his wrestling could lead to him having success at heavyweight.
Ultimately, Lewis edged out a very close decision to extend Latifi’s losing skid to three. Despite the loss, he makes it clear he will continue to fight at heavyweight.
“I’m taking my time to getting used to this division,” Latifi said at a recent Dominance MMA media day (via MMA Junkie). “I had some complications before the fight, and I just pushed on. I needed this fight. It was a big matchup, and I look forward fighting in this division.
“I started my career in heavyweight, and I will probably finish in heavyweight. But I’m a person that loves challenges. I’ve been an underdog all my life. So I could go down to 205 later in the future, too, but right now, I see myself fighting in the heavyweight division. I’m coming for the biggest guys in the division. I’m a giant slayer, so you know it.”
Although he lost to Lewis, Latifi says that fight has given him confidence as he knows he can have success in the division.
“Right now, just focusing on getting used to the division and I see myself coming back as soon as possible as I’m ready,” Latifi said. “I don’t see this fight as a loss. I beat a top-five contender in the heavyweight division, a guy that finished a lot of guys in the first round. To be honest, I think I controlled him pretty easy, three rounds.”