LFA interim flyweight champion Casey Kenney (10-1-1) will look to add another interim title to his collection this week. He takes on Vincent Cachero (6-0) for the interim bantamweight strap at LFA 62 on Friday, March 22.
Cachero reminds Kenney of where he was in his career six fights ago, who believes the two years of experience he’s compiled since will put him well above Cachero.
“He’s definitely not somebody that you want to take lightly, but I feel like I’m on another level from him,” Kenney told MMASucka. “I remember being in that spot. Fought some decent opponents but nothing I would consider a UFC-caliber opponent, and I thought I could take on the world. Confidence is a good thing, but now that I’m another six fights deep, I’d kick the shit out of my old self right now.”
LFA Title Pictures
Kenney stepped in as a replacement for LFA bantamweight champion Miles Johns, who was slated to fight Cachero. Kenney won the interim flyweight title at LFA 53 after defeating Brandon Royval.
Maikel Perez, the flyweight champ, hasn’t fought since last April. He was due to defend against Kenney in November, but the bout fell through, paving the way for Kenney to win the interim title. Kenney hasn’t heard from Perez since. And frankly, he isn’t interested in unifying the flyweight title.
“I’d love to beat on Maikel Perez but he had his chance back in November,” Kenney said. “Really, I’m focused on my bantamweight run now especially with what the UFC is doing with the flyweight division. Bantamweight’s going to be where it’s at.”
Kenney’s UFC Hopes
For Kenney, the UFC is the endgame. He says that earlier in his career, he would have been happy signing with another large organization but has his sights firmly set on the UFC at this stage.
Kenney came very close to achieving that in summer 2017. He competed twice on Dana White’s Tuesday Night Contender Series as a flyweight. He took a unanimous decision over Cee Jay Hamilton in his first appearance. However, White and the matchmakers wanted to see more out of Kenney, as they gave him a second fight against Adam Antolin. Kenney lost a controversial split decision, which he personally counts as a ‘W’ on his record.
“I consider myself an undefeated fighter,” Kenney said. “You can go back and watch that fight; I didn’t lose that fight. Dana said it himself. The whole MMA world said it. I can take a loss on the chin if I really lose. I’ve taken plenty of losses in sports, but that’s just something I haven’t done in MMA yet, as an amateur or a pro.”
Though apparently White thought Kenney won, the two fights failed to yield a UFC contract for the 27-year-old. Kenney believes a win over Cachero will be enough to finally get him in the big show, and that he won’t even need to unify the LFA title against Johns.
“I’ve done about everything there is to do outside of the UFC as far to get in, especially if I become LFA’s first two-weight division champ,” he said.
Kenney vs. Cachero
For Kenney, the title fight is his chance to show the fight world he belongs at bantamweight. He defeated UFC veteran Roman Salazar a couple of fights ago, which he felt was a showcase to his prowess at 135. A belt with a win over the undefeated Cachero would act as reinforcement.
“I’m either gonna to finish him early or I’m gonna finish him in the later rounds, put the gas tank to the test and see if he wants to go five,” Kenney predicted. “I want to put Vince away.”
LFA 62 will take place at The Bomb Factory in Dallas. It will be aired live on AXS TV.