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UFC 189: Thomas Almeida 'respects' Brad Pickett, but will 'look for knockout all the time'

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Thomas Almeida wants to knockout seasoned veteran Brad Pickett at UFC 189, but feels no need to be rushed with his career.

Thomas Almeida
Thomas Almeida
Eric Bolte-USA TODAY Sports

One of the hottest young prospects in the UFC right now, Thomas Almeida will face another veteran of the sport in Brad Pickett following his vicious performance against Yves Jabouin last April. Only a few days shy of Saturday, Almeida revealed to O Reporter he handles the pressure well and is in no hurry of getting to the top of the bantamweight division just yet.

(Watch UFC 189 and McGregor vs. Mendes this Saturday night, and join us here at Bloody Elbow for live fight night coverage.)

"I'm very pleased with where I am in the UFC right now, it motivates me to seek the top. I handle the pressure quite well, I'm young and I feel no hurry to be the best. My plan is to live one day after the other, train hard for my next fight and whatever comes from that is a consequence."

Speaking of his next fight, 36-year-old Brad Pickett has been in the game for a long time. Much longer than when Almeida even made his debut and for that alone, the Brazilian respects him. However, it won't stop him from looking for the knockout all the time when they meet in the Octagon.

"He's very much like Yves Jabouin, he likes to trade shots, not to mention he's very experienced. It's a great challenge to face such a tough guy who has already fought so many famous guys. I respect his history a lot, but I'm here to claim my spot and if I beat him, I will climb a few steps in my career. You can expect a very aggressive Thomas, who will look for the knockout all the time."

Thomas Almeida and Brad Pickett will kick off the main card of UFC 189 which will take place on July 11 in Las Vegas. Robbie Lawler and Rory MacDonald will fight for the welterweight title and Conor McGregor will face Chad Mendes for interim featherweight belt.