Las Vegas, NV – Pulling off upsets seems to always be on the mind of UFC flyweight Tim Elliott, but at UFC 272 on Saturday night he pulled one off against an opponent with both UFC lightweight contender Islam Makhachev and future 2022 UFC Hall of Fame inductee Khabib Nurmagomedov in his corner.
Elliott (18-12) defeated Tagir Ulanbekov via decision in a fight where he did almost literally anything and everything to win. Including grabbing his opponent’s gloves.
“Oh man, glad to get the win. It was a long hard training camp, I knew it was going to be a long hard fight, but it was fun. It was fun,” Elliott told the media in his post-fight scrum.
Asked about the grabbing Ulanbekov’s glove, Elliott admitted to doing it.
“Oh no, I grabbed his glove. For sure I mean we’re fighting. I’m grabbing everything that I can and the glove is part of the hand. His hand is inside the glove I’m trying to grab his hand so the glove is there. You’re not going to not grab the glove.”
During the fight Elliott landed two knees on Ulanbekov that looked very close in terms of legality. Both landed as Ulanbekov was getting off the canvas.
“Can’t fight and referee both so that’s on the referee to do his job. I’m there to fight. Knees on the ground, knees on the head, wherever they come I’m trying to knock him out. Obviously I’m not trying to throw illegal shots, but you can’t play that ‘hanging out on one knee’ game. I threw it and it was legal so all is fair.”
After moving to train under James Krause, Elliott has gone from constantly training hard to having a focused training camp for a specific opponent.
“Yeah man I’m getting older. I used to just work work and work like a dog, but I’m too old. I’m never going to be able to outwork guys like Brandon Moreno, these young guys, I’m going to have to train smarter not harder. Instead of training three times a day and sparring four or five times a week I’m doing one private every day specifically for my opponent and then I’m doing one hard practice and everything else is skill building that’s it,” Elliott said.
“I’m just learning and getting better. I’m not dog fighting no more I’m getting too old for that.”
With a big win over Ulanbekov and scoring the upset Elliott remained focused on what he wants next.
“I want the guys who I was supposed to fight that backed out before this fight. Sumudaerji got hurt. Amir Albazi accepted a fight and then said he was hurt. I got videos of him sparring like the next week. I want these guys that are accepting fights and then pulling out. I have two guys that already accepted fights with me and those are the two guys I would like next.”
Watch the full UFC 272 post-fight press scrum with Tim Elliott above. More coverage from the event can be found below.