Top ranked bantamweight Thomas Almeida wants to fight Jimmie Rivera next. With most bantamweights already booked, Almeida feels Rivera is the fight to make.
“I need a fight,” a frustrated Almeida said. “I wanted Michael McDonald but he’s not in the UFC anymore. So I want Jimmie Rivera. He’s one of the only top ranked fighters that don’t have a fight.”
Almeida is coming of a second round TKO win over Albert Morales and wants a ranked opponent next. Sitting at number 9, he feels 5th ranked Jimmie Rivera is the perfect step moving forward.
“The best guy for me is Jimmie. I don’t know if he’ll accept to fight me in Rio. Let’s go, let’s do this. We both don’t have fights so let’s go. If you want to be champion, you have to fight the best guys in the world. We’re both in the same boat so let’s do this. Let’s put on a big show for the fans.”
Almeida hasn’t fought since November and feels that there aren’t many options that lie ahead. With the majority of the top 15 scheduled to compete, Rivera seems to be an option that makes perfect sense for him.
“It doesn’t even have to be in Rio,” Almeida explained. “I just want to fight. I know we can put on a big show for the fans and for the UFC.”
UFC 212 will take place on June 3rd in Rio, headlined by Jose Aldo and Max Holloway. While Rivera has been in pursuit of Raphael Assuncao, Almeida feels that he and Jimmie could put on a show in front of a sold out crowd.
“UFC 212 is a big show. It’s a big PPV so it’s a lot of exposure. There’s a title fight between Aldo and Holloway so a lot of people will be tuning in. We both like to strike so I’m sure we can put on the fight of the night.”