Former UFC welterweight title challenger Stephen Thompson is all set to fight this weekend against another rising contender in Geoff Neal in the main event of UFC Vegas 17.
He was supposed to be the co-main event fighter on the card, but after the fight between Khamzat Chimaev and Leon Edwards was called off, Stephen Thompson and Geoff Neal were bumped up to the main event slot.
While Stephen Thompson is getting the opportunity to fight in the main event slot, for the second straight fight in the row, he is fighting an up and comer. Prior to this, he fought Vincente Luque at UFC 244, where he defeated him decisively.
However, given the fact that he hasn’t fought someone ranked above him in a while, Stephen Thompson thinks that UFC views him as a gatekeeper.
“They are trying to make me the gatekeeper and it is not going to happen. I went 10 rounds with Tyron Woodley, beat Jorge Masvidal, a controversial loss to Till, and then getting knocked out to Anthony Pettis doesn’t help,” Stephen Thompson said on Just Scrap Radio on BJPENN.com. “My last two opponents have been ranked below me and I haven’t fought anyone ranked above me. Hopefully, they aren’t trying to make me a gatekeeper, I’m not a gatekeeper. I have a lot of fight left in me and I want that title shot.”
Stephen Thompson wants to KO Geoff Neal
Stephen Thompson revealed during the interview that he plans on knocking out Geoff Neal.
“I never go out there looking for the knockout, if it happens, it happens. The more you fight the top-ranked guys the more skilled they are and the harder the knockouts can be,” Thompson explained. “Everyone says I haven’t knocked anyone out in a while but look who I am facing. It would be good to finish a guy like Geoff Neal. I’m not looking for it, but if it is there I will take it.” (H/T – BJPenn.com)
How do you guys see this fight going? Who do you guys think wins in a fight between Stephen Thompson vs Geoff Neal? Let us know in the comments section below.