William Knight, who improved to 5-0 on the Contender Series this week, is hoping developmental deal gets him more fights.
Las Vegas, NV — Three UFC contracts were handed on on Dana White’s Contender Series this week. The 24th installment of the show overall, it was once again a good night for prospects — but William Knight was not among the contract recipients.
The light heavyweight did, however, earn a developmental deal. That will see him fight in smaller promotions, while still under the UFC umbrella, with the end goal being the big show, of course.
“To be honest, actually this deal is a great opportunity. A development contract,” Knight told reporters including Cageside Press following week eight of this year’s Contender Series.
After training for three years, said Knight, “I feel like I need some more work. And if I need work, then I’m going to get it done. So it feels amazing actually.”
Knight was all of 4-0 prior to DWCS this week — but he never doubted that he belonged. “If you think about it, and really put fights together, there’s some amateurs out there that are just vicious, more than pros. All it really is, is pay, and elimination of a couple of moves. I feel like we’re all one in the family, so it really didn’t make a difference.”
In the fight, Knight had his share of difficulties. He was certainly hit, but came back to win in the final thirty seconds. “My coach, he has this thousand kick drill. So instead, I have some of the fighters just kick my body at random,” Knight said. That entailed holding his arms over his head while partners lit him up. As a result, “as he’s punching my body, I swear I felt nothing. I’m like ‘hey maybe if I burn him out some more and he thinks it’s doing something, then I can seize my opportunity and throw my knee.’ Which I did, I threw that jumping knee, I believe I threw it twice.”
That got him the reaction he was looking for, and “one thing led to the next.”
Where Knight goes from here should be interesting. “This contract, as long as I get fights, because I was having trouble back home [getting fights],” he said. In part, that was due to “fighting the top guys. I wanted to be that guy to put a loss on people’s undefeated records. I may have fought a short amount of time, but I fought some pretty decent people, if you check the rap sheet on these people. These are guys who are 5-0, 11-1.”
“So I’m sitting here jumping in with these guys with the experience I have, and beating them,” he added.
Thus while he’ll take the developmental deal, “I feel like I’m where I need to be, but other people see it differently, and there’s no arguing. I can’t say what’s what and what’s not. I’m the guy who’s doing the work, I’m not the guy on the outside.”
Heading into week eight of this year’s Contender Series, Knight had a pretty intense face-off with opponent Herdem Alecabek. That, at the show’s first-ever face-off.
“No lie, and I don’t sugarcoat nothing. His corner, at least one of them, were just talking. Maybe they were just bigging him up, whatever, but just the fact that some of his family members got on my Facebook page and were just running their mouths, that all led to something,” Knight said in way of explanation. “You all don’t know me, I understand you’re trying to big him up, but don’t come to my page talking junk under my pictures.”
That led to the intensity Monday, during which Knight’s thought was “I have no fear, I fear no man. When we broke apart, he kept locking his eyes with me, so I wasn’t about to break my eye lock with him.”
“The intimidation factor doesn’t work on me,” he added. “Because if anyone knows, I come from a Caribbean background, and they don’t play that game. The intimidation factor is something your grandmother will destroy in front of you, like instantly.” Knight could be seen pacing in the parking lot after the face-offs, basically because “I was ready to fight then. I was like ‘let’s do this now, I don’t want to wait til tomorrow, let’s do this now.’ It just got the best of me.”
Watch the full post-fight press scrum with William Knight from Dana White’s Contender Series Season 3 Week 8 above!