Santiago Ponzinibbio will be fighting in the featured preliminary card fight of UFC Fight Night 105, his opponent will be the unranked Nordine Taleb.
The Brazilian MMA veteran believes that his five wins in the UFC, with a potential sixth on Sunday Night, should make him eligible to fight ranked foes inside of the Octagon.
“I accept every fight that’s offered to me,” he said to MMA Junkie. “I’m a dedicated employee. I did think I’d get a ranked opponent this time. Nordine Taleb is a good fighter, but he’s not ranked. But without a doubt, a victory over him will put me in a good place in my weight class. What matters isn’t just the quantity but the quality of wins. I beat Zak Cummings, who’s very tough. I beat Court McGee, who’d never been knocked out before. I did it in the first round. I beat Sean Strickland, who’s otherwise undefeated with 18 wins. I’ve been beating these guys. So I feel I deserve a ranked opponent, though right now I’m only focused on Nordine Taleb.”
With a 5-2-0 record inside of the UFC (23-2-0 overall), Ponzinibbio has earned some big victories in the promotion over Sean Strickland, Court McGee and Zak Cummings. Despite the fact that Taleb isn’t ranked in the middleweight top 15 hasn’t stopped the Brazilian from preparing to be at his best on Sunday Night.
“But I always prepare very well,” he said. “I’m always looking to improve whether I’m booked or not. If I don’t win, I’ll analyze what happened so I can learn from it. But I won’t lament a loss since I did everything possible (to win). That won’t happen, of course, since I’m ready to win again.”
UFC Fight Night 105 takes place on Sunday, February 19 from the Scotiabank Centre in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada with Derrick Lewis and Travis Browne headlining. Fightful will be providing live coverage of the event, with a post-show podcast to follow.