This week released from his UFC contract, Ian McCall has recently been hitting more headlines than opponents. He has talked about CTE-type symptoms, his fear of brain damage, fighter pay, and even gone so far as to suggest his whole MMA career, because of these issues, has been a a big regret of his.
However, though inactive for over two-and-a-half years, ‘Uncle Creepy’ has certainly had some memorable fights during the course of 15-year professional MMA career. Here, in his won words, are some of his favorites…
1) Jerry Samson (Warrior’s Quest 6)
My very first fight. I was only 18. They said, “Do you want to fight a man?” I ran roughshod over guys but to get punched by a man was different. He was a golden gloves boxing champ in Hawaii. I remember getting punched by him the first time and I was like, “Oh s**t. This is real.” So I had to take him down and choke him out.
2) Chris David (Total Combat 15)
My Chris David fight was my first fight against a real journeyman. He was really tough. I threw everything I had at him and he didn’t stop coming forward. My fight went to decision for the first time in my career and I picked up the unanimous victory. I was happy with that one.
3) Coty Wheeler (WEC 30)
That was a fight where I ended up hurting him really bad. He had a lot of attitude going into it and there were so many people telling me how good he was and how I was going to lose. I was like, “F**k you.” I just shredded him. In the later rounds, I wanted to hurt him and I did. That’s not always the best game plan but it worked out in this case. I stopped him in the third round.
4) Brad Pickett (UFC Fight Night: McGregor vs. Brandao)
“I fought Brad in Dublin. It was a good performance. To get a dominant win over a guy like Brad is great. He was really slow at that weight-class. I was able to get in, punch and get out before he was able to throw. I showed that speed kills in this division. I fought Pickett coming off of my great performance in the (Illarde) Santos fight. It felt really good to put a few wins together in the UFC.
5) Demetrious Johnson (UFC on FX: Alves vs. Kampmann)
That was an emotional roller-coaster – even the things leading up to that fight. To know that I was able to perform at or even near my highest level under that sort of pressure was awesome. To take Demetrious to that limit, knowing he is the best pound-for-pound fighter on the planet, will forever stay with me. It does kind of irk me a bunch because of how it ended. I really let myself down and let everyone else down in the second fight. I came in completely under-prepared. I was in a really bad place when the second fight happened. I am in a better place now.
*** This feature first appeared in the May 2017 issue of Fighters Only ***