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Been Prepping for Short-Notice Bout with Vicente Luque for Months

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Joaquin
Buckley had no qualms about accepting a short-notice clash
against Vicente
Luque, as he has seemingly been preparing for the fight for a
while now.

Buckley (17-6) is scheduled to meet Luque (22-9) in the co-main
event at
UFC Atlantic City at Boardwalk Hall on March 30. Going into
arguably the toughest matchup of his career, Buckley is glad for
the opportunity to be able to prove his mettle.

“It feels good. This is something I have been asking for and
shouting about via social media for a long time. To get that big
name, to get somebody that I feel like will really get the respect
that it deserves with all the work I’ve been putting in. So now
that I get the fight I asked for, it’s a beautiful situation,”
Buckley said during UFC Atlantic City media
day.

Buckley accepted the matchup on a little more than a month’s
notice, replacing Sean Brady,
who pulled out due to an injury. “New Mansa” revealed that he had
no issues accepting the fight on short notice as he has been
preparing for Luque since December.

Luque was scheduled to fight Ian Garry at

UFC 296 in December but the bout fell through as Garry pulled
out due to a case of pneumonia. Buckley was self-admittedly ready
to replace Garry or step up if anyone pulled out from a scheduled
tilt between Shavkat
Rakhmonov and Stephen
Thompson. Rakhmonov vs. Thompson came to fruition with the
Kazakh submitting “Wonderboy” in Round 2. And although “New Mansa”
never got the call from the
Ultimate Fighting Championship brass to replace Garry, he kept
himself in fighting shape.

“What’s short notice to you?… You know this fight came right on
time, people didn’t know, I was preparing for this fight in
December already,” said the 29-year-old. “I had picked Shavkat
[Rakhmonov] and ‘Wonderboy’ [Stephen
Thompson] and I had picked Ian Garry and Vicente [Luque] to be
the fight that if anybody pulled out that I’d be ready for it. And
when that did happen, when Ian Garry had his little tummy gate, I
was like, ‘Alright bet, let’s get it.’ But Sean Shelby didn’t reach
out to me, my management didn’t reach back out to me so I’m like,
‘Ah whatever, but let’s stay ready just in case you know,
anything.’ And when I got the call for March 30 this weekend, I was
more than prepared to take it because I was already training for
it.”

Asked about the possibility of a future clash against Brady,
Buckley said:

“After I beat Vicente Luque the way I’m going to beat him, I don’t
think Sean Brady
[is] going to want to fight me, but we’ll see.”

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