The person least worried about Darren Till making it to UFC 244 may have been Darren Till.
The Englishman was scheduled to be at an open workout Wednesday and media day Thursday for his co-main event against Kelvin Gastelum Saturday at Madison Square Garden, but both appearances were canceled due to reported visa issues keeping Till from arriving until Thursday afternoon.
After weighing in Friday morning and standing before the crowd at the Hulu Theater for ceremonial weigh-ins, Till finally spoke to the press for the first time all week, looking as relaxed as any fighter could ever be about 24 hours before a bout.
“Just been chillin' out with my daughter and my coach, training and getting prepared. Everything else is [expletive] and over. The fight matters tomorrow,” Till said. “I said to the UFC I'll be at the weigh-ins and the fight, I don't care about anything else, I'm chillin'.”
Given Till is adjusting to a new weight class, this wasn’t the ideal time to have travel delays. This is his first UFC bout at middleweight after starting his career at welterweight. While Till had limited time to cut upon his Thursday arrival on Thursday, he said there wasn’t a ton of difficulty getting down to 185 pounds.
“I've misjudged it a little tiny bit this time because obviously, you get ahead of yourself, and also guys in the past who've moved up and then still missed weight because you think now I've got so many other kilos to gain, I didn't do that,” Till said. “I wanted to stay around what I would at welterweight, which was massive anyway.”
Till said he retained some extra water during the flight over, but it all eventually came off despite a little difficulty, and that none of it compared to the grueling nature of his massive weight cuts to welterweight.
Now, he’d like the jet lag to wear off by the time his fight comes around, but he won’t use any of the fight week mishaps as an excuse not to perform.
"You can tell yourself that it means something, I'm jet lagged or the hard weight cut or I've got this type of problem with an injury, but at the end of the day it's all [expletive],” Till said “If you're here to fight, you're here to fight you're ok. I'm carrying injuries, the weight cut was a little bit hard, I'm jet lagged and I'm here to fight, no excuses.”