Kyle Nelson knew he had to move up to lightweight after his last fight.
Nelson hasn’t fought since September of 2020 when he suffered a KO loss to Billy Quarantillo. The loss dropped him to 1-3 in the UFC and he wasn’t sure if the UFC was going to re-sign him, but even if they didn’t, his next fight was going to be at lightweight.
“I knew after my last fight that the plan was to move up to 155, the majority of my issues with my fights at featherweight have come from an excessive weight cut,” Nelson said on Just Scrap Radio on BJPENN.com. “Skill-wise, I’ve always felt great, striking, wrestling, jiu-jitsu, I think just crash dieting and not getting a ton of notice to make 145, I’d make weight but I don’t think I ever fully recovered. After the first round or halfway through the second, the crash dieting would crash up to me. I have been planning on this move for two years so I have been able to build up.”
Although Nelson was uncertain if the UFC was going to bring him back, they told him if they had a fight for him along with a new contract.
With the UFC having a hard time getting Jai Herbert a fight at UFC London, the promotion reached out to Nelson who immediately accepted it.
“I didn’t quite know a lot about him when I got the offer. Once I watched his fights, I remembered watching the fights live. I’ve seen all of his fights now, he’s got good striking, okay wrestling defense, and okay jiu-jitsu defense,” Nelson said. “I don’t see an area where he outperforms me. Now that I’m at 155 and with my cardio, I will be able to utilize my skill over the three rounds. Where he is best at is striking and it will be a big shock when I outstrike him.”
Once Kyle Nelson began studying Jai Herbert, he began to get confident that he will be able to pull off the upset and silence the hometown crowd. The Canadian not only expects to win, but he plans to KO the Brit early.
“I think it will rely a lot on what Jai will do. I’ll be happy to strike with him but if he’s going to be on his bike and moving a lot, he will last a little bit longer,” Nelson said. “If he wants to go toe-to-toe, he’s going to sleep early. Either way, I’m going to finish him.”
If Nelson gets the KO win over Herbert as he expects, he hopes he can make a quick turnaround and make up for two years of not fighting.
“At 155 I can make weight all the time, so I think we can start rattling off some fights,” Nelson said.
Who do you think will win at UFC London, Kyle Nelson or Jai Herbert?