Diego Ferreira is along for the UFC journey.
It has taken him from place to place, fight to fight and through ups and downs. But he has never wavered, largely in part to his aspiration to support his family in the best way possible. As a child, Ferreira never truly had a home and he fights today in order to give his family the upbringing that he never had.
Ferreira believes that ambition and heart is what elevates him above his UFC 237 opponent Francisco Trinaldo and the rest of the lightweight division.
“I think I have the most (skill) because I have more desire than anybody,” Ferreira said. “I know I’ve put in a lot of work and I have more desire to get this win and others. That’s why guys look at me as dangerous right now. I created it (this desire) because I have a big dream. Provide for my family and provide a good home, I never had a home when I was growing up with my parents. That makes me work extra hard to give them what I never had and that’s what I take from to get my desire, to get better and to reach my goals.”
Ferreira’s dream is to work his way into the top five in the talent rich lightweight division and then eventually wrap that shiny gold belt around his waist. While he would love to fight for a title as soon as possible, the truth is Ferreira is in no rush because he thinks the secret to getting there is patience.
“I think it is patience,” Ferreira said. “You’re not going to take every fight in one day. It is patience to gradually put in the work and get into the ranking slowly and I think that key is patience.”
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His match-up with Trinaldo indicates that Ferreira is trending in the right direction, especially considering that Trinaldo appears at No. 15 in UFC’s rankings. Fighting a ranked opponent is something that Ferreira has been eagerly waiting for and on Saturday he believes he will be ready to capitalize on the opportunity.
“For me I am getting closer,” Ferreira said. “It feels good to fight a tough guy like him. It makes me feel good because we are taking steps, every step counts especially since it’s hard to get a win in UFC. And fighting him is one step closer to my big dream and the big picture that I want.”
Ferreira has studied Trinaldo and is well aware of his strength and grappling skills. He also has noticed that Trinaldo tends to “gas out” sometimes during his fights. Thanks to his work ethic and his training at Fortis MMA in Dallas, Texas, Ferreira believes his cardio will be a huge factor in this fight.
He also expects Trinaldo to attempt to take the fight to the ground and that’s where Ferreira believes he will take care of business.
“I think I have really crazy submissions up my sleeves and that’s what I think I’m going to get on Saturday night,” Ferreira said. “That’s what I’m looking for and I think I have it under my sleeve.”
Make sure you tune into watch these lightweights collide in what has true fight of the night potential. UFC 237 begins Saturday at 6:15pm/ 3:15pm ETPT with the UFC Fight Pass Early prelims. The ESPN+ prelims begin at 8pm/5pm ET.
The UFC 237 main card will start at 10pm/7pm ETPT and is only available on Pay-Per-View. Order the card here.
Gavin Porter is a digital producer and writer for UFC.com, follow him on Twitter at @PorterUFCNews