It’s every MMA fighter’s dream to compete under the bright lights of the UFC, and Justin Basra is no different.
“Anyone who fights that says UFC isn’t the dream is lying,” said Basra in an interview.
“The UFC for MMA is like the NHL for hockey.”
But while the UFC is certainly the end goal, Basra said he’s also taken into account his age when pondering his future in the sport.
At 30 years old, Basra said he knows his age could play a role in where the sport takes him, but in the end he just wants to test himself against the best possible competition.
“I just want to see how good I am; I want to compete on a high stage,” said Basra.
“If it’s Bellator, it’s Bellator. If it’s One FC, it’s One FC. But the UFC is the dream.”
Currently sitting with a record of 4-0, Basra said a few more wins could be enough to put him on the radar of the bigger promotions.
With wins in September and November combined with another win or two to begin 2019, Basra said he may be able to secure his opportunity on the big stage. And there’s one specific fighter he’d love to have the chance to compete against.
“I was scheduled to fight Brad Katona at the end of 2017 at XFFC 16, and I would love to get that fight in the UFC, if possible,” said Basra.
“When we were scheduled to fight, no one was talking about any other matchup, but ours. It would be a big fight for Canadian MMA, and I still say we owe each other a fight.”
Task At Hand
But before Basra can think too far into the future, he must first get past Joaquin Calderon at Rumble in the Cage 59.
Calderon brings a record of 4-4 into the cage, and Basra said he’s expecting a stiff test, in which a victory would look strong on the resume.
“He’s a game opponent, he comes to compete, and he comes to fight,” said Basra.
“He’s getting finishes in the third round and winning decisions, so that tells me he’s durable for a full three rounds.”
A victory on Sept. 29 over Calderon would mark Basra’s fifth as a professional, and ninth-straight, including his 4-0 amateur career.
With each win, Basra continues to showcase his elite wrestling, as well as his ability to learn other areas of MMA at a fast pace, having only been training the sport full-on for three years.
Prior to taking up MMA, Basra was a high-level wrestler, working his way up to the Olympics. But shortly before he began training MMA, his weight class in wrestling was removed from the Olympics, steering him in the direction of MMA.
“I know how to compete. I’m good at competition, and that’s what drove me to do MMA,” said Basra.
“When I realized my weight class was taken out of the Olympics, I saw MMA as a platform for me to compete on again.”