Brendan Allen wants a step up in competition after dispatching yet another opponent in dominant fashion.
This time around, Allen mauled Paul Craig in the UFC Vegas 82 main event with a devastating grappling game that saw him bludgeon the Scottish fighter on the ground before wrapping up a rear-naked choke submission in the third round.
Despite a valiant effort to escape, Craig was forced to tap out at just 38 seconds into the third round, securing Allen his sixth win in a row — with five of those fights ending in a submission. Now Allen hopes the UFC will reward him with a matchup that could finally earn him a title shot.
“I’m a man of my word, that’s what I do,” Allen said afterward. “I need a No. 1 contender’s shot. I think I deserve it. I’ve earned it. I beat everyone they put in front of me. I finished them. Whoever the UFC says that it is. I don’t care who. [Robert] Whittaker, [Jared] Cannonier, [Khamzat Chimaev], whoever, I don’t care. I’m trying to fight.
“I want the No. 1 contender, I’m the best in the world. I’m here to prove it. If you say otherwise, come show me, don’t tell me.”
Both middleweights are well known for high-level grappling, so that’s exactly what unfolded throughout the opening round, with Paul putting on pressure from the clinch, which was reversed with a well-timed takedown from Allen. On the ground, Allen was ultra-aggressive as he moved into the mount while raining down punches and elbows from the top.
A scramble led to Allen locking on a rear-naked choke and it appeared he would get the finish but Paul was simultaneously attacking with a calf-slicer. The pressure from the calf-slicer made Allen abandon his submission but he quickly attacked with an ankle lock of his own as the fighters continued battling for position.
As the second round got started, both fighters came out firing on the feet but it was Allen who landed a cleaner strike before the fight hit the floor again. From there, Allen unleashed a nasty elbow that opened a huge cut on Craig’s head while he continued attacking from the top.
Allen was relentless with his offensive attacks and Paul was stuck trying to survive in many of the exchanges. With Allen in complete control, he decided to drag Paul to the ground one final time in the third round and he quickly advanced to take his opponent’s back.
It didn’t take long for Allen to wrap his arms under the chin to secure the submission and Paul tapped to end the fight a split second later.
Since first arriving in the UFC, Allen has been heralded as a top prospect but he’s quickly emerging as a serious threat to anybody in the world at 185 pounds, especially as he continues to gain confidence with these high profile wins. It remains to be seen if the UFC will consider his request for a No. 1 contender’s fight but anything seems possible with Allen continuing to run roughshod over his competition.
“I’m coming,” Allen said with a warning to the middleweight division. “I’m a f****** problem. Come see me if you want it.”