Andre Ewell is looking to get his first Octagon finish this Saturday night at UFC Vegas 11 when he battles Irwin Rivera.
When this fight was announced, many fans were confused by the matchup given Ewell is near the rankings while Rivera is just 1-1 in the UFC. Yet, for Ewell, he believes this is a good matchup for him as he returns from a broken arm and reveals he was offered Cody Stamann earlier this year but wasn’t cleared to fight.
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“At the end of the day, since the pandemic, it is get in where you fit in. Before I got cleared for my broken arm, they gave me a ranked opponent in Cody Stamann, but I wasn’t cleared in time for it,” Ewell said on Just Scrap Radio on BJPENN.com. “Just the fact they called me for that fight, it shows where I am at. People think this is a tune-up, Irwin is a game opponent though. He has a heart so it is a good clash of styles and a good comeback fight for me. It could be the other way around that maybe I’m the stepping stool for him.
In this fight, Ewell will have a massive seven-inch reach advantage. It will no doubt be a factor in the fight and “Daii” expects to be able to piece up Rivera and hopefully get a finish.
“For Irwin to fight Giga I know how tough he is. Then, to go the distance, Irwin gets straight credibility from me,” he said. “He is a game opponent, so I know I need to hit the right spots. I need to be persistent and accurate. It is a high-risk, high-reward fight, and I love to take risks.
“The way I look at it, I just need to get back to my old ways and be dominant. Just throw,” he added.
Given Andre Ewell was already offered a ranked opponent in Cody Stamann, he expects a win over Rivera will get him a ranked guy next time out.
For the 32-year-old, he likes the idea of the Stamann matchup or perhaps a rematch with Marlon Vera.
“I’m probably in the 30’s or something, me winning this will put me near the rankings. A win can get me the chance to call someone out in the rankings. Cody Stamann, I’d love to have that fight. Song Yadong, the Marlon Vera rematch,” Andre Ewell said. “I know I get a ranked opponent next if I win this fight.”
For Ewell, he knows his time is running out at bantamweight. He says the plan is to get ranked at 135 and then move up to 145. So, winning this one is crucial for the plan to come to fruition this year.
Do you think Andre Ewell will beat Irwin Rivera at UFC Vegas 11?