Anthony Pettis is happy to check something off his bucket list this weekend.
“Showtime” Pettis makes his third 2022 appearance in the semi-finals of the PFL playoffs this Friday, and it’s a massive fight for him.
In his 38 professional fights, Pettis has never fought in the state of New York, but he will on August 5. Pettis was supposed to fight in Brooklyn, NY, in 2016 at UFC 223; however, it never came to be. Six years later, he fights at Madison Square Garden inside the Hulu Theatre.
Fighting in New York is on the 35-year-old’s bucket list.
“I’m so excited. This is like a bucket list thing. In New York, I have a lot of fans, and there are a lot of Puerto Ricans and a lot of Mexicans out there. And then MSG is iconic when it comes to fighting sports,” Pettis told Cageside Press in an exclusive interview. “So, I get to check this off my list, and you know, there’s a lot riding on this one. I gotta win this fight. They put us in the main event, I was the number one seed coming into that, and I got a rematch, so it’s kind of weird to be in that position. Again, in a new position that I’ve never been in- fighting a guy back to back have, you know, within a couple of weeks.”
The MMA veteran also wants to fight in Australia, the UK, and Florida before calling it a career.
Pettis rematches Stevie Ray in the main event of PFL 7. In June, Ray submitted Pettis with a body lock, in almost a mirror image of his loss to Dustin Poirier.
The No. 1 seed in the playoffs regrets playing it safe in the fight, but he won’t be doing that on August 5.
“I’m not gonna play it safe,” Pettis said “I’m not gonna go out there like like the way I did in his last fight. I went out there [throwing] jump kicks. I fought him southpaw only because that’s my karate stance, my taekwondo stance; I knew how to keep the range with it. I’m gonna go out Orthodox, and I’m gonna bite down on my mouthpiece. I got 15 minutes to get it done and stamp my ticket to the championship.”
Pettis is undefeated in rematches. He beat former UFC champion, Benson Henderson and Donald Cerrone in rematches and will be looking to go three-for-three in rematches come Friday.
“I’m gonna bite down on my mouthpiece, and I’m gonna move forward. I’m gonna make him feel the pressure as opposed to letting him pressure me. And you know, just do what I do best, man. Like I’m not gonna go out there and try to be Showtime. I’m going out there to try to win this fight.”
Watch the rest of our interview with Anthony Pettis above. Pettis vs. Ray goes down this Friday at PFL 7 on ESPN.