Sign up for ESPN+ right here, and you can then stream the UFC live on your smart TV, computer, phone, tablet or streaming device via the ESPN app.
Though he won’t turn 30 until later this month, Andre Fili has already stepped inside the UFC’s Octagon 15 times.
His latest appearance at UFC on ESPN 10 was a success, but it wasn’t without some suspense, as he ultimately edged Charles Jourdain via split decision in a featured featherweight but at the UFC Apex in Las Vegas on Saturday night.
“I was begging God. Man, I don’t understand (the split decision),” Fili said. “I really feel like I didn’t perform as well as I could have. I’m my own hardest critic. If you scored that fight for him, I don’t know what fight you were watching. Respect to Jourdain. He was telling me I won the fight.”
After being dropped in the opening stanza, Fili seemed to find his footing down the stretch, blending takedowns with striking to edge a game opponent in Jourdain, who was coming off a big upset win over Doo Ho Choi in South Korea this past December.
“I was having fun out there and balancing that with listening to my coaches. You’ve got to find that balance between fighting smart, and then feeling it and having fun,” Fili said. “I don’t want to have competitive fights. I want to blow people out of the water. I want to be dominant. This kid was really good. I really think Charles Jourdain is going to make a lot of waves in this sport.”
Since his promotional debut, Fili has experienced up-and-down results within the Las Vegas-based promotion. The Team Alpha Male product has yet to put together anything longer than a two-fight winning streak. He does appear to be turning a corner, however, winning five of his last seven UFC appearances – a stretch that includes victories over the likes of Myles Jury, Dennis Bermudez and Artem Lobov. During his tenure, Fili has come up short against high-level opposition such as Max Holloway, Yair Rodriguez and Calvin Kattar, as well.
Despite that battle-tested resume, Fili feels like he has been overlooked. He hopes to change that with a booking against another high-profile foe in his next bout.
“I want a big name,” he said. “I’m tired of people looking at me like I’m just a regular UFC fighter. I want a big name next. I’m going to go back and talk with my team. A lot of guys just get on the mic and shout names. That’s not my style.”
« Previous Dana White Not Interested in Holding UFC Events at Partially-Filled Venues Next Jessica Eye Even Grateful for ‘Critical Assholes’ Following UFC on ESPN 10 Defeat »