Going the distance is not something Tafon Nchukwi wants to get used to inside the octagon.
The 26-year-old booked his spot on the UFC roster after finishing all four of his previous opponents by TKO/knockout. Nchukwi fought through all three rounds for the first time in his career last December, beating Jamie Pickett via unanimous decision at UFC Fight Night 183 last December.
Following his octagon-debut victory, the Cameroon native is not trying to make three rounds a habit against Jun Yong Park at UFC on ESPN 24, May 8.
“I’m going to show you all a little bit more of what I learned and what I can do in there too,” Nchukwi said. “I don’t want to get too comfortable with three rounds, it’s the best thing to just get in there, get the job done and enjoy the rest of the night.”
Tafon Nchukwi is not getting “Paid overtime”
Nchukwi is by no means regretting going the distance. He would keep the outcome the same if he could do it over again.
He does recall a few moments where he may have been able to put Pickett away. In the third round, Nchukwi landed a head kick, followed by a knee to the body.
The blow put Pickett down, but Nchukwi never took his opponent out.
Instead of harping on it, Nchukwi is opting to learn.
“I got to stop being hesitant. When I see the kill shot, I need to make sure I do the right moves to get a finish,” Nchukwi said. “There’s a lot of opportunities where I could have finished that fight, but because of me being in the mindset of, ‘I’m going to put this man out, it kind of slipped away.’”
A quick night
Nchuki is yet to face anyone with as many fights as Jun Yong Park, especially under the UFC banner. Park suffered four losses in 16 professional fights.
The South Korean lost two bouts by submission and is yet to be knocked out. Nchukwi is looking to change that.
He predicts a second-round finish. For Nchukwi, the shorter the fight, the better.
“I feel like I am going to get in there, pick him apart and get the finish in the second round,” Nchukwi said. “We don’t get paid overtime.”
Watch our full interview with Tafon Nchukwi above. UFC on ESPN 24 (UFC Vegas 26) takes place Saturday, May 8 at the UFC Apex in Las Vegas, Nevada.