We sat down with one of MMA’s top prospects, Manny Bermudez, as he prepares to make his long-awaited UFC debut at UFC on FOX 28 in Orlando on February 24.
Worth the wait
First round finish after first round finish, Manny waited but the call never came. Despite all of that, the top-ranked New England MMA prospect never wavered. He continued to rack up more victories, and after his eighth first-round stoppage on January 27, the undefeated bantamweight Bermudez was now the newest member of the UFC. Scheduled to fight less than a month after his last bout, Manny is not concerned about the quick turnaround:
“Because my last fight went as short as it did, I could just roller coaster into the next fight camp.”
He went on to discuss his prolonged wait to make his octagon debut.
“We had been trying to get me into the UFC for forever at this point. When we heard about this one [UFC on FOX 28 in Orlando] being a possibility, we didn’t think it would follow through but here we are now. It’s on.”
All of Bermudez’s professional fights have either taken place in his home state of Massachusetts or Rhode Island a short drive away. However, Manny is positive that fighting in Orlando will be business as usual.
“It’s just going to be a bigger stage with a lot of cameras in your face, but once you get in the cage none of that follows you in. I just need to put all of that stuff in the back of my mind and focus on my job, and that is to beat Albert Morales on the 24th.”
“The Bermudez Triangle”
Throughout his professional career, Bermudez has been ending his fights quickly. The 23-year-old now has an 11-0 record that includes eight first-round submissions. Even with his dominance on the ground, Manny is comfortable wherever the fight ends up.
“It’s not always me necessarily taking guys down, sometimes they get hit or it’s my wrestling. I’m not always trying to take it to the ground. I’m fine with wherever it ends up, and so far it’s ended up in the right spot.”
Even with this being his debut, Bermudez feels that his dominance on the regional circuit has certainly prepared him for high-level UFC competition. Manny is confident that his winning streak will continue against Albert Morales, however, he is not overlooking him.
“I think I’m better than him skill-wise. What he has is this crazy toughness, he’s gritty, he gets into wars, he’s the kind of guy you can’t underestimate, he’s ready to make it a gross, bloody fight.”
Kicking off the fights for the evening, Bermudez is confident that he will be able to leave Orlando with more than just a win.
“That $50k bonus would be nice. With my style, I tend to finish my opponents quick. On February 24 you can expect a quick finish and expect me to walk away with that ‘Submission of the Night’ bonus.”
Manny Bermudez vs. Albert Morales is a scheduled preliminary fight at UFC on FOX 28: Emmett vs. Stephens on February 24.