Jake Matthews says he can’t get a ranked welterweight to fight him.
Matthews put on a performance of a lifetime when he knocked out Andre Fialho this past June at UFC 275. Not only did the 28-year-old Aussie get the finish, but he looked flawless in putting a halt to Fialho’s momentum.
Having won four of his past five, Matthews (17-5 MMA, 11-5 UFC) is ready for a jump up in competition but said no ranked contender is accepting a fight with him.
“I understand being just outside the rankings makes me a dangerous fight for anyone in the top 15,” Matthews told MMA Junkie. “But there’s only one way for me to progress into the rankings: One of these guys need to step up. I have called out just about everyone I can. The top 15 have been stale for a while. It needs some new blood, and that’s me.”
Matthews called out numerous names, including Santiago Ponzinibbio (28-6 MMA, 10-5 UFC), but is yet to get a fight booked.
So far I’ve asked for Ponzinibbio, Thompson, Magny,” Matthews said. “Gone as far as leaving it to the matchmakers but still nothing. … Also (asked for) Geoff Neal.”
Matthews has grown up in the octagon. Earning a UFC deal through “The Ultimate Fighter Nations” in 2014, the young Aussie had mixed results to start out his UFC tenure. But after moving back up to welterweight, Matthews has won seven of nine, notching wins over the likes of Li Jingliang, Diego Sanchez, and most recently Fialho.