Curtis Millender has flourished since entering the UFC, owning a 3-0 Octagon record against high-level competition heading into a co-main event at UFC Wichita.
Wichita, KS – Striking specialist Curtis Millender has landed a co-main event bout at UFC Wichita in just his fourth appearance in the promotion. Opposing him will be Brazilian standout Elizeu Zaleski dos Santos, who has won six straight fights since falling in his promotional debut. Cageside Press spoke to Millender, who is embracing the Octagon success he has seen thus far.
“Very much so. It actually just hit six years that I’ve been a pro, so to finally be where I need to be to be successful, take care of the family, it’s perfect.”
Going 3-0 to start your UFC career is certainly optimal, and Millender credits confidence to his great success.
“Definitely setting new goals, and not even just that. I always said once I got here and I proved it, my confidence was going to grow. And once my confidence grew, everybody else is in trouble. My confidence is way up there now.”
A co-main event this early into a run with the UFC means the promotion is certainly paying attention, and Millender would love to take advantage of that.
“Definitely staying focused on the task at hand but still go out there, put on a show, be dominant, and make a statement so I can get whatever I ask for in the future.”
Creativity is definitely something that has stood out when it comes to Curtis Millender, with his last three knockouts coming by knee or head kick. This creativity makes him a problem for any opponent in there.
“It’s definitely going to be a fun one to go back and rewatch. But it doesn’t matter any style. If you want to move around a lot, do crazy stuff, stand in front of me, you’re in trouble. I create my own opportunities in there.”
In the Octagon, Millender has faced former title challenger Thiago Alves, and well-respected welterweights Max Griffin and Siyar Bahadurzada. Zaleski dos Santos is a bit more under the radar than those names, but that does not make a difference for Millender.
“I was excited about it because I’m a huge fight nerd. I watch every fight, I watch everybody, so they’re not going to give me anybody that I haven’t seen fight before. So I was excited. I definitely like his style. He fought another guy who I train with cordially, Sean Strickland, so I was thinking, ‘If he can do that to him, let’s go.'”
With this being his first fight in 2019, Millender would love to start the year on a high note before making a lot of noise by year’s end.
“Goals are definitely to get this win, get this bonus, take the summer off maybe. I’m looking to fight two more times at the end of the year. Somebody like Wonderboy, a fun fight like that. Wonderboy or [Darren] Till. I’d smash them both.”
Check out Curtis Millender in the co-main event of UFC Wichita on ESPN+ tomorrow, March 9, at 8:00 p.m. EST.