UFC 224: Brian Kelleher Outlines Why he Called Out John Lineker
By FCF Staff
After Brian Kelleher defeated Renan Barao in February, he called for a fight with another Brazilian star, John Lineker. But, according to the American, the callout was only about making a big move in the 135 ranks.
Kelleher will face Lineker on the main card of UFC 224, Saturday, which will take place in Brazil. While discussing his campaign for a bout with Lineker recently, Kelleher said this (quote via UFC.com):
“For me, it was just about fighting somebody that’s in the top ten, that puts me in title contention, that was open for a fight,” Kelleher said. “I know he was supposed to fight Jimmie Rivera and he pulled out of that fight, and they booked Rivera against Marlon Moraes, so I thought what a perfect time to call someone like him out. I knew he was probably looking for a fight now, and he was the only guy that was really open that made sense for me. I beat two Brazilians so far, so I figured the UFC would probably like to stick to the theme. I would have liked to have it on American soil, but it’s all good.”
“…I think with how I performed against Barao, I put on a really fun performance, I fought really well, and I think the UFC saw that and really liked that, so they gave me the opportunity against Lineker. You have to make a statement and ask for what you want, and that’s what I did and that’s what I got and I’m happy about it.”
As the event nears, Lineker is ranked #6 in the bantamweight division while Kelleher is not currently sitting in the top 15.