Ian Garry considers it ‘irrelevant’ who he fights next: ‘I’m the superstar kid’

Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC

Ian Garry is one of the welterweight division’s brightest prospects, and many would like to know who he’s fighting next.

Don’t count Garry among those wondering.

Now 2-0 as a pro and 10-0 in the UFC after winning a unanimous decision against Darian Weeks at UFC 273 this past Saturday, “The Future” is poised to be a major player at 170 pounds for the foreseeable future. Strategic booking could help to ensure success, but Garry doesn’t see the need to play the matchmaker.

“I’m in a position where I’ve got all the hype,” Garry said on The MMA Hour. “I’m the superstar kid that people are talking about. I just want to show up and put on amazing fights and knock people out, so for me it’s just a case of letting the UFC do what they do. They will make a match that they want to see happen that will excite the fans. I don’t care if it’s another newbie that they want me to beat up or a guy whose been around the division for years and they want to see me tested, I don’t care. I’m gonna go in there and do what I do, which is show up and win.

“I’m a competitor, I win. So whoever is across the cage is irrelevant. It’s about me. There’s a reason I’ve been on two UFC pay-per-view cards. There’s a reason I’ve been so highly hyped. Because I show up and I put on a fight, and I do a good damn job showing up in that cage. So anyone they want to send my way, it’s fine, at least if they’re willing to get knocked out.”

Garry, 24, signed with the UFC after capturing a vacant Cage Warriors championship in June of this past year and made a splash in his promotional debut with a first-round knockout of Jordan Williams at UFC 268. He had to go the distance to defeat Weeks, but was still pleased at having picked up another victory.

“An ‘A’ because I won, and that’s what I do — I win,” Garry said when asked to grade his sophomore performance. “Whether it was the cleanest performance or whether it was a sloppy performance, a win’s a win, and that inevitably is on my career when you look at it now, it’s 9-0. It’s 9-0. And you know what’s better than 9-0? 10-0. It’s coming soon.”

Two judges scored the fight 30-27 for Garry on Saturday, so even though the fight lacked standout moments he’s viewing the experience as a major positive both due to becoming more used to the ebb and flow of fight week and because he had his hand raised in the end.

Garry currently trains with the star-studded Sanford MMA gym in Florida, and he’s eager to build on his first three-round UFC fight, even though he feels he showed an array of tools against Weeks.

“I’m much happier with this performance [than my UFC debut] because it shows my overall game,” Garry said. “It shows, look, 15 minutes I’m fresh by the end of it. I don’t know if you watched it back, but if you watched it live and you see me in between Rounds 2 and 3 I was laughing and joking with my corner. It’s what I do. I had a smile, we had a joke about each other. I love what I do and I’m blessed to do be in a position where I get to do what I do in front of a thousand people and put on a show and I am happy with that performance because it showed so much of what I have.

“It showed my takedown defense, it showed my elusiveness in the cage, it showed my footwork, it showed my intelligence of OK, this guy’s smart, how do I overcome that, how do I move forward and how do I find the gaps. I found gaps and I utilized what I figured out was working or it wasn’t and I kept winning. It shows me that I’ve come so far already in my short time at Sanford. It shows me how much more I have to go because when I see a fight like that I’m like, OK, it was a great performance, but there’s so much more I can do and so much more to learn and it just makes me more excited to get back in the gym.”

Assuming Garry isn’t diagnosed with any egregious post-fight injuries, he hopes to be back in the summer, preferably during the UFC’s International Fight Week in Las Vegas. The annual event is scheduled to take place from June 27-July 3, with UFC 276 being hosted at T-Mobile Arena on July 2.

Even the option of fighting closer to home on a U.K. card doesn’t entice Garry as much as the chance to make his debut in the fight capital of the world.

“I just feel like it gives me enough time to slow my body down,” Garry said. “Obviously, going into a fight camp, a weight camp, a fight itself, not that I’m injured or I got hurt or anything like that but just kind of give my body time to just come down a little bit and then get back to the gym, sit down with my coaches in the video room, watch the fight and see what they want me to work on and how we can improve from here.

“I feel like I’ve more than enough time to completely change my game and mold around whatever we sit down and discuss we can change and will benefit me going forward. I feel like that’s the perfect time to go again. I want to fight in Vegas, and the fact that it’s International Fight Week makes it even a bigger want to do it.”

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