Jared Cannonier plans to “re-open some eyes” with his performance against Nassourdine Imavov at UFC Louisville

By Cole Shelton - June 4, 2024

Jared Cannonier will be making the walk to the Octagon again after a year off due to injuries.

Jared Cannonier

Cannonier last fought back on June 17, 2023, when he defeated Marvin Vettori by decision. He was then offered to fight Khamzat Chimaev on short notice in Abu Dhabi, but Cannonier injured his MCL which has kept him out of action until now.

“I was supposed to get cleared in late March but I didn’t get the appointment until early April, so early April I got cleared,” Cannonier said on Just Scrap Radio on BJPENN.com. “They offered me a fight at 301 to fight Paulo Costa, that would have been way too early to jump right into a camp coming off this injury. So, it just wasn’t the right timing, the perfect opponent, he’s definitely a better opponent than the one I have now, but it is what it is. It’s another opportunity to show the UFC, the fans, and the rest of the world that I’m title-bound and I’m a future champion.”

Although Cannonier isn’t getting the big-name opponent that he wanted, he will headline UFC Louisville on Saturday against Nassourdine Imavov.

“I like main events, we get main event money so I don’t mind that extra 25k for another two rounds, on top of that my conditioning is never an issue, I can’t say the same for my opponent. He seems like he has slowed down and looks tired in fights. My cardio is king,” Cannonier said.

Despite Cannonier being the underdog at UFC Louisville, he expects his cardio and pressure will be the difference in him getting his hand raised on Saturday night. He also expects to remind everyone why he still is a top-ranked middleweight by beating Nassourdine Imavov.

“Pressure from start to finish, I’m going to get in his face, he’s going to look uncomfortable, feel uncomfortable, and be fighting for his life. That is going to be it,” Cannonier said. “We are going to see how much of a Dagestani he is when he shoots for these hips when he sees these bombs coming toward him. I plan on putting it on him. It’s going to be a physical fight, it’s not going to be a kickboxing match, it’s going to be a physical MMA match. If I grab ahold of him, we are going to see how strong he is compared to ‘The Killa Gorilla.'”

Should Jared Cannonier get his hand raised on Saturday he believes he could get a title shot. But, if he doesn’t get a title shot, Cannonier says he will be on standby for the big middleweight title fights coming up.

“A great performance can always elevate a fighter… It will re-open some eyes. I was ready to drop in with Khamzat in Abu Dhabi on 11 days’ notice, but unfortunately, my MCL had other plans. That is life. After this performance I expect the UFC to keep me on speed dial, if anything happens between Whittaker and Khamzat, I’m here. If anything happens between the championship fight, I’m here,” Cannonier said.

This article appeared first on BJPENN.COM


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