Tim Elliott enters last-minute Su Mudaerji bout at UFC Fight Night 233 with something to prove

Tim Elliott enters last-minute Su Mudaerji bout at UFC Fight Night 233 with something to prove


LAS VEGAS – As of this past weekend, Tim Elliott wasn’t on the verge of fighting, but now he is. And that’s just how he likes it.

Elliott (19-3-1 MMA, 8-11 UFC) meets fellow ranked flyweight Su Mudaerji (16-5 MMA, 3-2 UFC) in a main-card bantamweight bout this Saturday at UFC Fight Night 233, which takes place at the UFC Apex and streams on ESPN+.

Elliott would’ve been well within his right not to take this fight on just five days’ notice considering he just had a bout – a submission loss to Muhammad Mokaev – a little more than six weeks ago at UFC 294. But he simply couldn’t turn down the opportunity to get back in the cage.

“I don’t know, it just seemed right,” Elliott told reporters, including MMA Junkie, on Wednesday at UFC Fight Night 233 media day. “I have a good manager. I just do what they say. They’ve always steered me in the right direction. … Also, they gave me 10 pounds. It’s an easy weight cut, good fight.”

You might say there are two primary reasons Elliott accepted the fight. The first: not having to cut as much weight to get down to 136 poinds.

“It’s a little weird not having to kill myself so much for this one, but I think it’ll make for a better fight, a more exciting fight,” Elliott said. “I could’ve come in here and made the weight probably, but it wouldn’t have been healthy. I wouldn’t want to risk missing the weight class and not doing what I said I was gonna do.”

The second and perhaps more important reason Elliott took the fight is that he views it as an opportunity to prove something even at 36 and as a former UFC title challenger.

“I want to fight a striker. I want to try to work some of my striking,” Elliott said. “I haven’t really been able to do that. Through my whole career, I’ve kind of been eager to get to the ground. Even in the Mokaev fight, I was winning the striking portion, and I still had this eagerness to get him to the ground. But when I’m sparring in practice, I mostly stay on my feet. So I would like to show the new skills that I have, and I haven’t really been able to do that in my last few fights. I’m getting older now, and I’m running out of chances to really show how good I am and how good I can be, so I feel like Su is a really good opponent for that. …

“Honestly, I want to fight for three rounds. I want to put on a performance. I like to have time in the cage. I like to get takedowns and break records. That’s the place where I feel the most comfortable in my life, is when that cage door shuts. The more time I can spend in there, the better I feel.”

For more on the card, visit MMA Junkie’s event hub for UFC Fight Night 233.

Be sure to visit the MMA Junkie Instagram page and YouTube channel to discuss this and more content with fans of mixed martial arts.

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