One of the more promising fights on the UFC 255 undercard will see “The Beverly Hills Ninja” take on recent viral star Joaquin Buckley.
Buckley landed the kick heard around the world last month, knocking out Impa Kasanganay with a two-touch spinning attack that looked like something out of The Matrix. UFC 255 opponent Jordan Wright, the aforementioned “Beverly Hills Ninja,” was impressed alongside everyone else.
“It was pretty cool. Honestly, it was really awesome. I myself have a lot of pretty cool knockouts and submissions and finishes. So I thought it was really awesome,” Wright (11-0, 1NC) admitted during this week’s UFC 255 media day.
Despite the momentum Buckley is carrying into the bout, Wright, a promising prospect in his own right, isn’t looking to steal his opponent’s thunder. Instead, the 29-year old has a more down-to-earth approach. “I really like testing myself against the best guys in the world. And Joaquin is a really good fighter,” he explained. “And I just want to showcase that I have what it takes to up myself and beat him and get to that next level.”
Being a young star himself means garnering more attention on social media. Which often comes with its own set of pitfalls. But Wright appears able to navigate that minefield. “I think I can handle that stuff pretty well,” he said. “I’ve always been pretty good at separating my personal life from the social media life, and not getting too wrapped up on what goes on online or what people are saying about me and all that stuff.”
Finally, there’s that nickname. Comedy fans will remember the Beverly Hills Ninjas was the late Chris Farley. And Wright is, not surprisingly, a fan. “Oh, heck yeah. Big time. I saw that movie when I was in theaters,” he recalled. “Actually, when I was just a little kid. That was— Yeah, yeah, I probably shouldn’t have been taken to that movie.” The movie came out in 1997, shortly before Farley’s death. Wright would have been all of six years old. “But oh well,” he finished with a laugh.
UFC 255 takes place Saturday, November 21 at the UFC Apex in Las Vegas, Nevada. The main card airs live on PPV following online and televised prelims.