Darren Till is gearing up for the biggest fight of his MMA career thus far as he takes on former UFC welterweight title challenger Stephen Thompson at UFC Fight Night 130 on May 27 from inside Echo Arena in Liverpool, England.
As one of the bigger and more dangerous fighters at 170 pounds, Till hasn’t seen a long line of contenders wanting a chance to steal his divisional momentum. Few fighters, if any, have called him out, especially after the 25-year-old southpaw destroyed veteran Donald Cerrone via first-round knockout back in October.
Luckily, “Wonderboy” stepped up and agreed to fight Till in his own backyard. It’s a bout that could propel Thompson back into title consideration, but one that Till believes the veteran reluctantly took.
“I think ‘cause [Thompson] didn’t want to take this fight he’s been talking a bit more out of tame lately,” Till said during a recent interview with MMAnytt. “Not bad, ‘cause you know, he’s not a shit talking, he’s not a bad person, he’s a nice guy. But just ‘cause I feel like he was forced into this fight he didn’t want to take it. But he’s still comin’ and he’s comin’ to beat me on home turf and we’ll see, mate.”
In Thompson’s defense, he’s never dodged any fight. From wrestlers like Tyron Woodley to brawlers like Jorge Masvidal to well-rounded prodigies like Rory MacDonald, “Wonderboy” has stepped up and fought all sorts of top-level guys.
With an elite striking arsenal and growing takedown defense, Thompson remains one of the most puzzling contenders at 170 pounds. He’s rarely beaten to the punch and never seems overwhelmed inside of the cage.
Till is looking to change just that early into their main event clash later this month.
“I truly believe I’m gonna stop him in the second,” Till predicted. “It wouldn’t surprise me if the first. I truly believe I’m going to stop Stephen Thompson.”
It’s safe to say that Till is one of the most confident fighters in UFC right now. With an undefeated record of 16-0-1, including four wins in UFC competition, the talented English fighter is on the cusp of a welterweight title shot.
And if Till is right, Thompson isn’t going to stand a chance of derailing his momentum at UFC Liverpool.
“There’s no 35-year-old man out there who can f*ckin’ last more than three rounds with a guy like me right now,” said Till.