LAS VEGAS – Dricus Du Plessis thinks he was snubbed out of a main card spot at UFC 285.
Du Plessis (18-2 MMA, 4-0 UFC) takes on perennial top contender Derek Brunson (23-8 MMA, 14-6 UFC) on Saturday’s prelims at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas. The main card airs on pay-per-view following prelims on ESPN and early prelims on ESPN+.
Du Plessis has kicked off his octagon tenure at 4-0 and most recently had a Fight of the Night submission over Darren Till at UFC 282. However, his exciting performances have yet to land him a main card spot and the South African fighter is irked to see highly touted debutant Bo Nickal open up the main card.
“(He’s opening up the main card) as a wrestler,” Du Plessis told reporters on Nickal’s popularity at the UFC 285 media day on Wednesday. “But at the end of the day, maybe when I fight for the belt I can open up the card on the early prelims. I’ve been getting performance bonuses almost every fight, putting up amazing performances, and they boot me down to the undercard. But really, just give me the fight and I’ll win my fight. That’s what I’m here for.”
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Regardless of his spot on the card, a win over Brunson is expected to give Du Plessis a big jump in the middleweight rankings. But the former two-division EFC champion’s goals go way beyond a top-five spot.
“What more is there than fighting for that belt?” Du Plessis said. “That’s what I’m here for and more will come when I defend it. More will come when I go up a weight division and fight for another belt, when I defend my middleweight belt, become the greatest middleweight of all time. That’s a very high standard to set for yourself, but that’s where I’m at. I don’t have any other goal than to be the greatest to ever do this.”
For more on the card, visit MMA Junkie’s event hub for UFC 285.