After a trialing twelve months that saw him withdraw from two bouts due to injury and lose his good friend Shane Del Rosario, No. 3-ranked UFC flyweight Ian McCall made a triumphant return to the Octagon at yesterday’s (Sat., July 19, 2014) UFC Fight Night 46 from the O2 Arena in Dublin, Ireland, by defeating tough No. 9 Brad Pickett.
The win, which improved “Uncle Creepy’s” UFC record to 2-2-1 should propel McCall onto a big name match-up in the relatively shallow UFC flyweight division. While his record might not suggest he’s deserving of his lofty rankings spot, his only two UFC losses have come to champion Demetrious Johnson and No. 1-ranked Joseph Benavidez.
“Uncle Creepy” won’t be facing wither one of those killers just yet, but he does have his eye on another talented and dangerous opponent. Speaking at the UFC Fight Night 46 post-fight press conference, McCall said he’d like to face No. 6-ranked John Lineker, who beat Alptekin Ozkilic in UFC Fight Night 45’s “Fight of the Night” earlier this week:
“Sign me up. I’ll fight anybody. He’s top five or whatever. He might hit hard, but he can’t touch me. If you look at the Bagautinov fight, he’s got pretty big holes in his wrestling and jiu-jitsu. That’s a fight I’d love to take.”
McCall seems confident in his ability to best Lineker where he isn’t strongest, but “Hands of Stone” has been working vehemently on his wrestling game. He did lose to Combat Sambo champion Ali Bagautinov, but “Puncher” is one of the best grapplers in the division.
“Uncle Creepy’s” takedowns and movement appeared to be on an elite level yesterday, and he could be knocking on the door of a flyweight title shot should he defeat Lineker.
With Johnson somehow booked against No. 8-ranked Chris Cariaso at UFC 177 in August, should Lineker and McCall duke it out to decide the next 125-pound title contender?
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