Former Glory kickboxing champion Gokhan Saki made his successful Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) debut this past weekend (Fri., Sept. 22, 2017) at UFC Fight Night 117, knocking out Henrique da Silva in the very first round with a vicious left hook in Saitama, Japan.
It’s that type of striking that has fight fans excited for “The Turkish Tyson’s” future inside the Octagon, as the former kickboxing champion has vowed to deliver one knockout after another.
Admittedly, though, Saki says his conditioning wasn’t up to par, and vows to be in better fighting shape now that he’s had his first fight in over two years. Furthermore, he’s planning on moving stateside full time to train his overall mixed martial arts (MMA) game.
“I will be moving to the US to start training there for a while and I hope to fight this year one more time,” said Gokhan during a recent interview on The MMA Hour.
While he doesn’t have a camp set in his sights, Saki is keen on moving to Miami, Florida to train with Ilir Latifi and his training staff. Once he’s had more MMA training under his belt, Saki wants to fight once more in 2017.
Despite being perhaps a bit undersized for the 205-pound weight class, Saki doesn’t have any plans on dropping down to Middleweight. Plus, he’s used to taking on bigger men throughout his combat sports career.
With his first win inside the Octagon in his back pocket, Saki hasn’t wavered in his stance that he will be fighting for the 205-pound strap in 2018. This time around, though, he is upping the stakes, saying by this time next year he will be wearing the belt.
“Next year this time, I am fighting for the title and I am the champion,” proclaimed Saki. “I will be fighting for the title and I will take the title. Give me that time, and it will be exciting, I promise you,” he added.
After Jon Jones was popped for steroids at UFC 214, Saki says he was caught a bit off guard with the news, revealing that he’d still love the chance to face off against “Bones.” But whether it’s Jon, the current champion Daniel Cormier or anther man holding the strap, Gokhan says nothing will stop him from reaching his goal.
“100-percent. That is in my mind and I have proved to myself that if I want something, I will make it happen. This is something that I always see in my career. At this moment This is my point. I want the title and I will take it no matter what.”
Any of you think Saki will deliver on his latest promise?