This weekend’s UFC card just got a whole lot better for British MMA fans. The announcement was made two days ago that Cage Warriors Welterweight contender Rhys McKee, will face Khazmat Chimaev this weekend at UFC Fight Night 174. The news comes following a quick turn-around by Chimaev, who was in search of an opponent after his empathetic UFC victory over John Phillips last Thursday. McKee had the news broken to him by Cage Warriors president Graham Boylan in a mock-interview that will send shivers down your spine (video attached above).
Cage Warriors had set up a fake Q and A to break the news to Rhys and when Boylan uttered the words, “You better pack your bags then, cause you’re going to Fight Island, you’re fighting Saturday” McKee responded with a reaction best described as elated shock.
Prior to the call-up, Mckee was set to challenge for the vacant Cage Warriors Welterweight Title after a sixty-three second TKO win over Hakon Foss. But instead of preparing for a Cage Warriors title shot, McKee is packing his bags for Fight Island. In a recent interview with ‘Off The Ball’, McKee stated that if he didn’t make the UFC in 2020, then it would be a massive failure. Fast forward five months and the twenty-four-year-old is a UFC fighter. Proof that dreams can become a reality.
The Northern Irish hopeful will join fellow British stars Nathaniel Wood, Mike Grundy, Tom Aspinall, Jai Herbert, Paul Craig and of course Darren Till who faces Robert Whittaker in the main event of Fight Night 174. On a card stacked to the brim with British talent, McKee’s inclusion is a welcome additive. Good luck Rhys!
George Glinski is the founder of popular bare-knuckle boxing blog toethelinebkb.com and works as a staff writer and post-fight interviewer for BKBtm. His contributions to mymmanews.com include MMA, boxing, bare-knuckle boxing and Lethwei, with a particular focus on the British scenes.