Former WSOF featherweight Hakeem Dawodu announced recently that he is currently a free agent and spoke with MMAOddsBreaker.com on Saturday (June 3rd) in an exclusive interview. At 25 year old, Dawodu is regarded as one of the top featherweight prospects in the sport, boasting a 7-0-1 record, with six of those wins coming by way of finish. The Canadian is coming off an impressive unanimous-decision victory over Steven Siler at WSOF 35 and hopes his next fight will be in one of the top two promotions. You can watch the full interview below.
Here are some excerpts:
On initially being offered a WSOF title shot against then champion Lance Palmer
(WSOF had) been offering me title shots for the last couple of fights. But I didn’t want to take the title shot just because it would have required me to sign for another year. Of course I planned on knocking out whoever I was going to fight. So I didn’t want to stay for another year, I just wanted to fight out my contract and explore m further options and go into the best into the best league that’s the best for my career.
Fighting UFC veteran Steven Siler on short-notice at WSOF 35
(There were) no hesitations (taking this fight), I knew it was only 18 days’ notice. I just had to make sure I was close to my weight, and I had a healthy weight cut. I watched a bit of Siler, but I’m positive I can take out anybody in the division. Short notice or not, it wasn’t really a big deal to me. I didn’t get the knockout I wanted, that’s the only thing that slightly pissed me off. I should have put him away.
Potentially signing with the UFC and competing at UFC 216 in Edmonton close to home
That is my ideal situation. I don’t know why they wouldn’t put me on that card just because I am the No. 1 Canadian. There is no other Canadian fighter at 145 pounds that could even push me. If anybody wants to test that, they can try me. I’m out of Calgary, Edmonton is only a three-hour drive. So I do believe I should be on that card.
Seeing other Canadian featherweights prospects (Gavin Tucker and Jeremy Kennedy) signed to the UFC
Yeah it was bothering me (seeing those Canadian signed to the UFC) I was stuck under contract, so I could understand. But now that I’m a free agent, let’s get this thing going. I’m willing to prove my spot, I’ll fight anybody, anytime. Let’s me on Edmonton (UFC 216) and give me a tough opponent, I’ll prove myself. I’ll move onto 8-0, with 7 KOs.
Potentially fighting for Bellator MMA instead
Bellator has contacted my management team. We’re not making any fine deals yet. But we’re keeping our options because we have to keep me busy and keep my options open.
Keeping busy in the meantime
For now I’m just staying in crazy shape. I’m training ultra-hard. I don’t feel the need to fight right away. If I need to wait until September, I’ll wait until September. People still have to remember, combative martial arts I got over 70 fights under my belt. I’m just going to make sure I stay healthy, stay in shape and be ready for the call.
Why he’s the best Canadian fighter out there
I think everybody knows I’m the top 145-pound fighter. I didn’t fight as much as I liked to when I was with WSOF. But every time I did fight, I fought tough names. I fought tough opponents from Russia, and I fought Steven Siler. True fans really know who the No. 1 Canadian is, and once I get in the UFC, I’ll prove that.
Watch the full interview below…