Misha Cirkunov: 'Please don't give up on me' before I get to UFC's top five

VANCOUVER, British Columbia – Misha Cirkunov beat Jim Crute with a first-round submission Saturday to open up the main card at UFC on ESPN+ 16 at Rogers Arena in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada

Take a look inside the fight with Cirkunov, who handed Crute the first loss of his pro career.

Result: Misha Cirkunov def. Jim Crute via submission (Peruvian necktie) – Round 1, 3:38

Updated records: Cirkunov (15-5 MMA, 6-3 UFC), Crute (10-1 MMA, 2-1 UFC)

Key stat: Cirkunov had a fight end in the first round for the sixth straight time. He’s 3-3 in those fights.

Cirkunov on the fight’s key moment

“It feels amazing to be back in the win column. I dedicated my entire summer for this moment, for all these fans, for the UFC. I worked like a dog. From now on, every fight, every time I come to the UFC and I say I’m going to fight, I’m going to do the exact same thing.”

Cirkunov on proving he’s a contender

“Please don’t give up on me. I know I have a bright future in the UFC. I know it’s just a matter of time until I’m in the top five. Remember I said that: That day will come. Taking out someone like Crute is proof to myself and UFC fans to not count me out. I know I’ve lost some fights quickly, but don’t count me out.”

Cirkunov on what he wants next

“I’m working very hard. It’s a rough business, but I know I’ll end up on top just like all of the other sports I’ve competed in. Just give me some time. I’ll be there.”

To hear more from Cirkunov, check out the video of the full post-fight interview above.

Source: USA Today – MMA Junkie

Read the full article here: Misha Cirkunov: 'Please don't give up on me' before I get to UFC's top five