When “Gifted” Gabe Green took a short-notice opportunity against Daniel Rodriguez at UFC Vegas 1 in May of 2020, he hadn’t fought in nearly two years.
What’s more, as Green told The Top Turtle Podcast on Cageside Press recently, he hadn’t even trained in roughly the same amount of time.
“The first fight was four days’ notice, and I hadn’t even been training. I hadn’t trained for like two years, really, when I fought D-Rod,” Green (11-3) told us. “That whole thing was just like a weird fight, I never really got to just take it in or anything because I was running around doing medicals and this and that. All kinds of stuff. That whole experience was kind of weird and foreign.”
To go from the local scene to the big leagues of MMA that is the UFC, continued Green, “with the production values and everything, it was a weird experience to transition when I hadn’t even trained in two years. To go from literally off the couch to all of a sudden, I’m fighting in the UFC, it was almost surreal, it didn’t really like hit me.”
“But then I spent 15 minutes in the cage with D-Rod, and then when I walked out against [Phil] Rowe, I felt so much more comfortable than the first time I fought against D-Rod. And then when I won against Yohan [Lainesse], even more comfortable. I was like ‘yeah this is my house.’ It’s hard to explain, but I’m just comfortable in there now.”
That comfort level should serve him well at UFC 276 this weekend, where Green returns to action against surging welterweight prospect Ian Garry. With a two-fight win streak in hand, Green has a chance to derail the budding Irish star known as “The Future.”
“I think he’s a pretty solid fighter, he’s pretty good, but I don’t think he’s ready for me,” Green observed. “I think he might even be— hopefully not, because I want to fight the best Ian Garry that Ian Garry can bring, but hopefully he’s not looking past me or something. Hopefully he was training really hard and ready to fight me, because he shouldn’t be overlooking me, that’s for sure.”
UFC 276 takes place on Saturday, July 2 at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, NV.