The BFL bantamweight title will have a new owner come Thursday night.
Burlington, Ont.’s Serhiy Sidey (4-1) will make the cross-country trip to take on Vancouver, B.C.’s Gio Platon (2-0) in a battle for the vacant BFL bantamweight title in the BFL 68 main event on Thursday night.
In addition to having more than double the professional experience than Platon, Sidey, 25, also boasts a lengthy amateur career, giving him a significant edge in cage time.
Having fought a full 15 minutes on multiple occasions and Platon typically ending his fights quickly, Sidey said he expects to have a big advantage the further the fight extends.
“As the fight goes on it’s just going to go more and more in my favour,” said Sidey in an interview with MMA Empire.
“I’ve been in fights where I’ve done three-round wars and had to grind it out, spend that cage time and dug deep. And he hasn’t done that yet. I’m not saying that he can’t do that, but he hasn’t felt it before. I feel like I’m definitely going to have the edge on that because I’ve been there, I’ve felt it, I’ve pushed through it and I know I’m capable of grinding longer than he can.”
Sidey is returning to the cage for the first time since Feb. 2020 when he suffered his first defeat as a professional.
Since the loss, Sidey said he’s put an extra focus on grappling, with that being Mateo Vogel’s path to victory in that bout.
“Mateo had an edge over me in the grappling, so for the past two years now that’s been my main focus, my wrestling, my grappling, my jiu-jitsu,” Sidey said.
“I feel like I leveled up there so many levels because I’ve been putting so much effort into that, training with the right training partners, going to Niagara Top Team and working with all the great wrestlers there. That’s something I’m excited to show in this fight and all my future fights. I feel like I’m so much more comfortable with the grappling and I want to use that to my advantage now.”
After winning an amateur title, this will be Sidey’s first professional title bout of his career, as well as his first main event slot.
Sidey said he’s thankful to have this opportunity so early in his career and feels it’s a good opportunity to level up.
“I feel like this is a huge opportunity for me, especially since it’s the main event and it’s on UFC Fight Pass,” said Sidey.
“This is the exact kind of opportunity I’m looking for. I want to make sure I get myself to the UFC and go far in it. I’m so grateful for this opportunity because it’s tough to get these kind of opportunities and I know I’m going to take advantage of it.”
Standing in his way on Thursday night will he the hard-hitting Platon who has won both of his professional fights in a combined 1:50.
Sidey said he has a lot of respect for Platon as a fighter and knows he will have to be sharp defensively.
“He’s definitely a striker, a power puncher, very fast-twitch and a very game-day guy,” said Sidey.
“I actually watched his last fight live for BFL. I was there in the crowd and I was very impressed with his performance. Those are the kind of fights that excite me a lot, so I’m expecting him to come out strong.”