Adrian Yanez has explained his reasoning behind the difficult call to not fight at UFC 271 in his hometown of Houston, Texas.
The 29-year-old scored a 39-second knockout victory on Contender Series 2020 to earn a UFC contract, and since then he’s quickly become a rising contender in the bantamweight division. A first-round head kick in his UFC debut was followed by three wins in 2021, and Yanez’s most recent victory against Tony Kelley extended his current winning run to nine fights.
The Kelley matchup was Yanez’s only fight of 2022 after a fairly active 2021, which prompted MMA Underground’s John Morgan to ask the 29-year-old about his thoughts on the previous year during a recent interview. Yanez revealed that he was offered a chance to fight in early 2022 at UFC 271 in Houston, but he had other priorities at the time that kept him off the card.
“I’ll say like this – on my end, they asked me to come back in February but they wanted me on that Houston card,” Yanez explained. “And for personal reasons, I had already made the statement to my manager, to everybody like, ‘Look, when my son is born, first three months, not doing anything.’ I’m gonna be at home, I wanna be with my son. I’ve gotta be a family man, gotta be there for the mom, gotta be there for my son. Just gotta make sure everything goes well for the first three months, and after that I can start training and all that stuff.
“But they did ask me in February to fight in Houston, and I was like ‘Hey man, I already made this decision…I can’t go.’ I dreamed of fighting at the Toyota Center, but on my end, I just wanted to hold up on my end, for the mom. I told the mother of my child like ‘Look, I’m gonna be here for you, I’m gonna be here for the baby. Three months, I know it’s gonna be hard. I’m gonna be here, I’ve gotta be a man.’ So my professional life can hold off right now.”
Yanez Happy With Decision To Sit Out UFC 271
Yanez had the support of the Texas fans during his last fight in Austin, and even if that was only a taste of what a Houston crowd could offer, he’s still satisfied with his decision not to fight at UFC 271.
“I missed out on a dream opportunity of mine just so I could make sure that I’m there for my family. On that end, super happy I did that because if I would have fought and then something were to happen and I had to be like – I wouldn’t know how to take that. But I’m happy I took that route.”
The Texan may have missed out on the UFC’s last event in Houston, but Yanez is currently the promotion’s #13-ranked bantamweight and has the biggest fight of his career booked for UFC 287 in April. The 29-year-old is set to take on #6-ranked Rob Font, who is currently on a two-fight losing skid but has only been fighting the UFC’s top bantamweights during the last few years.
A win over Font could vault Yanez into the bantamweight Top 5 and put him a fight away from a title shot.
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