UFC 239: Arnold Allen Says Melendez Win Should Land Him in Top 15

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Unbeaten in the UFC, featherweight Arnold Allen is looking for a number next to his name after defeating Gilbert Melendez at UFC 239.

Las Vegas, NV — Come the middle of next week, Arnold Allen is expecting to see a number next to his name. The featherweight had four straight victories in the UFC heading into UFC 239, but was unranked. Win number five in the promotion, however, came against Gilbert Melendez, and Allen is hoping that finally puts him in the rankings.

“I don’t know if a win over Gilbert puts me in the top fifteen. I kind of feel like it should,” he told reporters including Cageside Press following the fight. “A lot of people say I should already be there.”

Perhaps he should. Then again, it’s a deep weight class. Melendez, however, is a name, despite being one out of action for years. A former Strikeforce champ. Who once fought for a UFC title. Either way, Allen doesn’t seem bothered. “Whatever,” he said dismissively. Besides, rankings seem to matter little in this sport.

As for anything unexpected in the bout, it appears there was nothing.

“No, no not at all,” Allen said about any surprises in the fight. “Everything was as we planned. Everything was as my team said, Firas [Zahabi, of TriStar fame] told me. Everything we drilled, everything we went over, everything we talked about, everything happened.”

The one knock on Allen has been activity, but asked if the key to success at featherweight was activity, Allen pointed out that “I’m still 25, so if I keep fighting at this rate, I’ll still have 30-odd fights when I’m done. I’ve had a lot of fights already, I’ve been fighting since I was about 12. I’ve had a lot of fights.”

“The experience is not missing,” he added, “it’s there.”

On whether he’d like to get on another big card next, Allen pointed out that “cards don’t really get much bigger than this one, do they?” That said, he added “it felt no different than fighting on the London card. Maybe that’s because it’s my neck of the woods, and they give me a bit more noise. Mind you the arena at the O2 is pretty big. I don’t know where it stacks up against this one.”

In any case, Allen isn’t too worried about his return it seems. “If they made me wait to London, I don’t mind. December, London, where ever.”

Watch the full post-fight press scrum with Arnold Allen from UFC 239 above!

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