Photo of Vinny Magalhaes courtesy of M-1 Global
Former Ultimate Fighter (TUF) 8 finalist Vinny Magalhaes will make his return to the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) ranks as he takes on Igor Pokrajac at UFC 152 on Sept. 22, 2012 at the Air Canada Centre in Toronto, Canada.
Vinny's first stint with the promotion didn't go as smooth as he may have wanted, losing the TUF Finale to Ryan Bader, which was then followed by a unanimous decision loss to Eliot Marshall four months later at UFC 97, which ultimately led to his release.
Since then, he's turned things around, racking up seven wins with only one loss and has been doing major damage in the famed Abu Dhabi Combat Club (ADCC) against the likes of current UFC heavyweight contender, Fabricio Werdum.
After getting a second chance to shine under the brightest lights in mixed martial arts (MMA), "Pezao" is determined to make the best of it and declares he does not want easy fights whatsoever. Apparently, UFC matchmaker Joe Silva is more than happy to oblige, as he paired him up against "The Duke."
Speaking to Brazilian news outlet Tatame, Vinny talks about why he was eager to make a return to the Octagon and also says he is so confident in his ground game that he can submit anyone in the light heavyweight division, including the current champion, Jon Jones.
"The reason why I wanted to return to the UFC was to prove that I can fight with the best, so I'll never refuse a fight. I believe that Igor would become a top 10 with one more win because it would be his fourth in a row - but that's not gonna happen. I guess that, with a win over him, I would be able to fight a top 10 next. Actually, I don't care. I'm just thinking on my next fight. He's a tough dude, I believe he's a good test for my debut. There are some other fighters in this division that would be more easy fights for me, but I told Joe Silva that I wanted to fight someone who was coming off wins, because if I fight someone who's coming off losses, it wouldn't prove anything for me."
Vinny was asked how he felt his submission game stacked up with the rest of the 205-pound class and his confidence in his ground skills was apparent going as far as saying that he can submit current division champion Jon Jones, as well as everybody else:
"On the ground, I believe I can submit everyone in my division in the UFC, including Jon Jones, but it's too soon to speculate about that. I didn't even debut yet. And more, having only good jiu-jitsu won't make anyone a UFC champion. To beat the champion, I'd need to get better in other areas too, unless he starts the fight in my guard."
Indeed it is too soon to speculate about a future showdown with "Bones," as Magalhaes first must make sure that his return is a successful one against Pokrajac.
A submission victory over Jones is easier said than done, considering the fact that he has yet to be put on his back or be in any sort of danger, for that matter, in his MMA career thus far.
But hey, there is a first time for everything, right?
How about it Maniac's, do you feel the Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu (BJJ) black belt will find success inside the world-famous Octagon the second time around?