Ian Machado Garry has backup status – and GOAT potential – on mind after UFC 303

LAS VEGAS – It’s optimistic for sure, but it’s hard to fault Ian Machado Garry for his ambition.

After a close decision win over recent UFC transplant and former Bellator standout Michael Page (22-3 MMA, 1-1 UFC) to open the UFC 303 main card Saturday at T-Mobile Arena, Garry (15-0 MMA, 8-0 UFC) is off to an impressive 8-0 start to his UFC career.

That has the welterweight already thinking about the chance to be the best in history, let alone win a UFC title. And the latter goal, he plans to put himself in position to be ready for a twist of fate.

“I am on my road to destiny to be one of the greatest of all time,” Garry said at his UFC 303 post-fight news conference. “I’m going to do that by any means necessary, and I don’t care how it gets done. In 10 years’ time, my name is going to be in that GOAT conversation. Who’s the greatest of all time? You’re going to say Jon Jones, (Georges St-Pierre), Anderson Silva Ian Machado Garry.

“I’m going to have my name in that conversation because it’s opinion based. If you’re Brazilian, you’ll say Anderson Silva. If you’re American, you might say Jon Jones. We could all sit here and have all of our opinions. As long as my name is in that conversation, I’ve had a successful career.”

But that’s in 10 years. Looking much sooner down the road, the welterweight title is on the line in England in three weeks when British champion Leon Edwards defends against Belal Muhammad. And while there is nothing to say that fight is in danger of falling apart, stranger things always have happened in MMA.

With an eight-fight winning streak, only former champ Kamaru Usman has gotten out to a faster UFC welterweight start than Garry. That’s why he said he’ll plan to be in Manchester not only to watch the fight, but in case one of those crazy things happens. And maybe then what should be next for him will present itself much quicker than expected.

“We’ve got Manchester in three weeks. I’ll be there. I’ve already told the UFC prior to that I will be willing to stand in,” Garry said. “I know there’s no one else above me ready to go. I know there’s not because there was no one else above me to f*cking sign the fight with me because I had so many conversations with Hunter (Campbell) and the guys at the UFC.

“There’s no one else above me except Colby (Covington), and he said that he was running. So no one else is available. I will be there in Manchester, I will stand on that scale, and if the opportunity arises, I will go out there and get my hand raised.”


Social media reacts to Ian Machado Garry's victory over Michael Page at UFC 303 to stay unbeaten

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Story originally appeared on MMA Junkie