BAMMA bantamweight and featherweight champion Tom Duquesnoy fulfilled his contractual obligation to the British promotion when he choked Alan Philpott into submission at the O2 Arena in Dublin on December 16th.
After that, it seemed inevitable that the UFC would come calling. And so it has transpired.
Reports coming out of Duquesnoy’s homeland of France today claimed that the 23-year-old has signed with the world’s premier MMA promotion and that he will make his debut on April 15th. Jim Edwards of FloCombat subsequently claimed to have confirmed the veracity of those reports.
— Jim Edwards (@MMA_Jim) January 10, 2017
Update: Having spoken to Duquesnoy himself, Niall McGrath of Severe MMA has discovered that the Frenchman has not actually signed the contract as of yet, but hopes to do so in the coming days.
Duquesnoy, who trains out of the famed Jackson-Wink gym in Albuquerque, New Mexico, has long been considered one of the hottest prospects in the world competing outside of the UFC. In 16 professional bouts, ‘Fire Kid’ has lost just once. That defeat came in only his fifth professional fight and his opponent was the ultra-talented Makwan Amirkhani, who is now 3-0 in the UFC.
Since then, Duquesnoy has won 10 fights, with only a controversial no-contest breaking up that run. Just 2 of those fights have gone the distance.
Duquesnoy won the vacant BAMMA featherweight title by submitting Teddy Violet in 2014 and made 3 defences before dropping to bantamweight in 2016. There he stopped Damien Rooney in February and defending BAMMA champion Shay Walsh in May.
The latter was one of the finishes of the year.
Against the aforementioned Philpott, Duquesnoy was pushed hard, but he came through the tough test with flying colours.
This young man will be a really exciting addition to the UFC’s already fascinating 135-pound division.