Jalin Turner believes the UFC wants to push him up the lightweight rankings and is ready to live up to the hype.
Turner made his UFC debut on short notice up a weight class at UFC 229 and suffered a knockout loss to Vicente Luque. He then got his first UFC win by TKO over Callan Potter but couldn’t build off of it as he suffered a loss to Matt Frevola in his next fight. In February, he returned to the win column with a TKO win over Joshua Culibao.
Now, at UFC Vegas 9 against Thiago Moises, Turner is ready to start a winning streak inside the Octagon.
“I haven’t told anyone this but I have been watching him since he was the RFA champion. I really wanted to fight him because I wanted the RFA title,” Turner said to BJPENN.com. “I’ve been keeping my eye on. It is a great fight for me, I just told the UFC I am ready and they gave me him and I’m excited. I’m confident.
“It will be a big fight for me,” he continued. “The UFC has a lot of expectations for me and I have to start living up to the hype.”
Entering the fight, Turner is the betting underdog but is embracing that. For him, he’d rather be the underdog so he can make his friends and family some money as he expects to knock out Moises.
“I see this fight playing out exactly how the first round did when he fought Michael Johnson if his chin holds up. If not, I will knock him out. He will get picked apart on the feet and he is not a better wrestler than Frevola so he won’t get me down,” Turner explained. “Thiago has good jiu-jitsu but I am not worried about it. I expect to finish him. I see a lot of holes in his game and I can’t wait to exploit them. Even other people have already exploited them but I will be the one to finish him.”
If Jalin Turner does get his hand raised by knockout he believes he could get a ranked opponent. Yet, for him, the biggest priority is just remaining active and building a winning streak.
“I would be all for a ranked guy. I’m ready to start fighting my way up the rankings. I want another two fights this year,” he concluded. “I want October or November and if everything goes well then I will go again in December.”
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