Former UFC Middleweight Champion Michael Bisping believes surging lightweight Paddy Pimblett has the mindset, confidence, and work ethic to reach the top.
After signing with the UFC earlier this year, Pimblett made his much-awaited promotional debut in September. In the main card opener of a European-flavored UFC Vegas 36 card, “The Baddy” squared off against Luigi Vendramini. Despite appearing to be stunned by the Brazilian early, Pimblett recovered, found his rhythm, and secured the first-round knockout he’d predicted pre-fight.
Making the most of his time on the mic following his victory, Pimblett declared himself to be the UFC’s newest cash cow. He also refrained from making any callouts, instead suggesting the rest of the lightweight division would be calling him out soon enough.
Bisping Tips His Compatriot For Greatness
The man opposite Pimblett inside the Octagon post-fight at UFC Vegas 36 was the Liverpudlian’s compatriot Michael Bisping. Like many, “The Count” was impressed with the former Cage Warriors champion, and predicts big things for him.
During a recent appearance on Ariel Helwani’s The MMA Hour, Bisping commented on the current state of British MMA. Having praised the growth of the sport’s scene in his native country, the UFC Hall of Famer discussed one of the men leading the charge, Pimblett.
“It’s (British MMA) an embarrassment of riches right now… My God, a star is born with Paddy Pimblett, my God. What a debut and what a character.”
When asked whether Pimblett is championship material, Bisping said that whilst that’s yet to be seen, “The Baddy” certainly has the attributes and qualities to make it happen.
“We don’t know yet, that is yet to be seen. Of course, he came in with a stellar pedigree. His UFC debut went well; he got clipped a couple of times, but like my old boxing coach Mark Kinney used to say, ‘You don’t go in the rain without getting wet.’ It’s an MMA fight, fair play he got clipped, but then he got the knockout.
“I know he’s got great grappling, he’s got excellent jiu-jitsu… He’s lightweight right? It’s probably the toughest division. But certainly on paper, he has the mindset; mind control is everything. Paddy has the confidence, he has the mindset, and he seems like he has the work ethic… I’m very excited to see the ride.”
With a wealth of new followers, attention, and a lucrative deal with Barstool Sports, Pimblett’s road to stardom is certainly well on track in the early stages of his career on MMA’s biggest stage. Despite many hoping to see him accelerated towards a ranked opponent, the 26-year-old recently said he won’t be meeting a top lightweight inside the Octagon without a six-figure contract first.
Do you think Paddy Pimblett is a future UFC champion?