UFC Vegas 69: Jamal Pogues Put Family First Before Finally Making UFC Debut


Las Vegas, NV – UFC heavyweight Jamal Pogues will make his UFC debut on Saturday night against Josh Parisian at UFC Vegas 69 at the UFC APEX.

Pogues (9-3) comes off successful Dana White’s Contender Series bout where he took a decision victory over Paulo Renato Jr. This Saturday he makes his official debut for the promotion.

“I’m just numb right now. It’s a dream come true you know. There’s a lot of preparation coming into this and you know I worked my ass off definitely in this camp. The whole time once I got my contract so I’m just soaking it in this week man,” Pogues told Cageside Press among other media on Wednesday.

“I’m not trying to get too excited you know, and I’m trying to act like I’ve been here before. It’s crazy because half the time like I’m a fan.”

Originally scheduled to fight at the end of 2022 Pogues instead withdrew from the bout due to personal issues.

“Most people don’t know like my mom is still fighting stage three cancer. It kind of took a toll on her and as well as my dad got really sick as well. I do have two boys which people didn’t know that are not my own so it was like,” he said.

“I had to be really be a family person, a family man, and I wasn’t mentally ready to fight. I was trying to go through the camp but then most of my time I was back home just trying to make sure, you know, take care of my family.”

The lack of time to focus on his craft forced Pogues to make the tough decision to pull from the fight.

“Respectfully I didn’t want to come out here and not give my best. I don’t want to put a half-assed performance. I don’t want to come out here and makes every excuse in the book like most people do,” Pogues said.

“So I was like let’s take the time, let’s do it right, and I feel like that’s what I did.”

On Saturday he’ll take on Parisian who’s coming off a TKO victory in June of last year.

“You know he’s tough. I think he throws a lot of crazy wild things. Little more athletic than most people, but I feel like that’s also going to be his downfall. He’s going to burn his wad trying to go out there and act like you’re a 155er. People talk about my pace and my speed, but I’ve been doing this since middleweight,” Pogues said.

Pogues has been known to be able to put a pace on his opponents that most can’t keep up with. Starting off at 185 pounds and moving his way up to heavyweight Pogues said he hasn’t lost much of the quickness and speed he possesses at lower weights.

“I think that’s going to be his downfall is trying to match my pace and my speed. Other than that he’s tough. 4-fight veteran. Don’t forget Contender Series too so I feel like it’s a good fight,” Pogues said.

“I don’t overlook the guy. I prepared, trust me, a lot for this guy.”

Watch the entire media day scrum with Jamal Pogues above. Pogues takes on Josh Parisian at UFC Vegas 69 on Feb. 18 at the UFC APEX.


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