Paulo Borrachinha ready to replace aging Brazilian elite in UFC

Paulo Borrachinha has only fought twice in the UFC, but it seems like the Brazilian power striker is already on his way to the top – so much so that the press was invited to Rio de Janeiro this week to talk to the surging middleweight.

In conversation with AG. Fight, Borrachinha said that he is aware of everything that is happening around him and also of the efforts made by the UFC to get his name out in the world. Ready to establish himself as a future star, the 26-year-old believes that the recognition is there because both the fans and his employer see a lot of potential in him.

“The approval of the fans helps, but I think the UFC is betting a lot on me and sees me as a potential idol for Brazil”, Borrachinha said. “I know the weight that all this brings, but I’m prepared to carry it […]. I’m having good results. [The attention given to me] surprised me, because we’re not used to that, especially so soon.”

Giving his take on the middleweight division’s current state and its lack of new names, Borrachinha thinks that he can fill that gap. With the Brazilian MMA elite closing in on 40 years of age, as it is the case with Anderson Silva, Vitor Belfort or “Jacaré” Souza, Borrachinha wants to get to those names’ lofty heights as as fast as possible.

“The division is lead by Michael Bisping, who doesn’t want to fight and is already talking about retiring”, Borrachinha poked the UFC’s current middleweight champion. “I don’t understand what he wants to do, I think he wants to be a champion without a fight […]. But analyzing on the Brazilian side, the last great hope we had was “Jacaré”, and I think Anderson doesn’t want the belt anymore; it’s very hard to fight at a high level […]. So, on the one hand it’s bad, but on the other hand it’s good because it’s an easier way for me to get there.”

Ten fights deep into his career, Borrachinha has left the cage victorious every time as of now. His knockout of Oluwale Bamgbose at UFC 212 earlier this month was the ninth knockout of his career and the first time he had to fight into the second round.

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