As so often happens when a fighter earns a big victory in the Octagon, Gregor Gillespie was prompted to make a callout in his post-fight interview at UFC Fight Night Utica on Friday.
The four-time NCAA All-American wrestler from Edinboro University declined to make use of the platform after earning his fifth consecutive UFC triumph, a second-round submission of Vinc Pichel in the evening’s co-main event.
Instead, as he so often does, Gillespie talked about fishing.
“I don’t call people out. It’s not what I do,” Gillespie said in his post-fight interview. “ All I’m thinking about right now is fishing tomorrow and fishing the next day. I’ll be fishing until my training partner fights at Madison Square Garden next week and then I’m going to go and support him. I also don’t worry about winning streaks because guess what, if I lose what good is that winning streak? Some people have suggested my next fight should be at MSG but I like fighting away from home. I like staying in a hotel with my training partners. It puts me the right mindset, just having fun and being a team. So we’ll see what’s next but fishing definitely comes first.”
Later, Kelvin Gastelum, who has been known to make a few callouts himself, asked Gillespie on Fox Sports 1 why he didn’t take advantage of the stage as so many UFC competitors do. Gillespie’s response: It just feels fake. And besides, after going through the entire process of getting ready for the fight he just completed, it’s nice to take a couple steps back and enjoy life.
“I’m not that kind of person. I get how that’s a lot of people’s thing after a fight: They call someone out and they try to get someone higher than them and they try to climb the ladder like that,” he said. “I like to relax. It’s such a huge weight off of my shoulders and such a relief after I win, after a grueling training camp where I’ve killed myself for like 10 weeks straight and not seeing my friends or family for 10 weeks straight. I just want to fish and hang out with my friends and family and go home for a couple days.
“Then I’ll come back and I’ll watch one of my training partners, Andre Harrison fight [at Professional Fighters League 1 on Thursday] and we’ll take it from there. But I don’t want to call anyone out. If I were to do that, it would be completely inorganic. You would see right through that. It would be very fake. It’s silly for me to do that.”
While Gillespie doesn’t have a preference, it seems likely that he’s due for a step up in competition when he returns to action. “The Gift” is now 12-0 as a professional, and his five-fight winning streak ties him for the fourth-longest active winning streak in the UFC’s lightweight division.