Liverpool’s Paddy Pimblett, known to millions of MMA fans around the world as Paddy “The Baddy,” appears to be a confident and capable fighter with the world at his feet. The former Cage Warriors featherweight champion has amassed an undefeated streak in the UFC. At 4-0, Pimblett has also scored three “Performance of the Night” honors in just over a year.
But just like for many of us, Pimblett regularly combats negative voices that seek to derail his extraordinary progress. This fighter’s answer? Take those voices and use them as an unstoppable fuel to win. M&F sat down with “The Baddy” on a chilly day in San Diego, CA, to learn more.
Last year, Pimblett took great pride and pleasure introducing his “The Baddy Foundation.” The premise behind the initiative is to raise funds to feed children who are struggling to eat and provide them with essentials like toiletries and hygiene products.
“I just think anyone in my position, or anyone with a bit of pull who gets publicity should help,” says Pimblett. “It’s just the way I think the world should be. I want to help people that have been in similar situations to me.”
As an athlete and a philanthropist, Pimblett is a hero to many, but he’s also a human being with his own challenges to navigate. Fortunately, the athlete hasn’t shied away from opening up so that others can relate to his plight. Of course; problems shared are problems halved.
“Around the world there’s a big problem, but in Liverpool it’s been quite bad in the past year or two, to be honest,” he says. “Young lads just killing themselves. So, the catalyst for (opening up) was that one of my friends killed himself. Ricky [Warnick] was one of my mates and I found out that he killed himself two nights before my fight, when I fought in London. That was the catalyst for talking about it in the cage [in 2022] but I’d spoken about it long before then because I felt, like, depressed in 2018.”
He adds: “When I got out of it, and came out the other side, I started talking about it just because, as you say, people think I’m some tough man and I shouldn’t feel like that, but everyone has them sort of feelings. You can’t help it. It’s just one of them things, and the more people realize that, and come to terms with that, the better place the world will be.”
Paddy ‘The Baddy’ Pimblett Is Energized by Negativity
In setting up “The Baddy Foundation,” Pimblett also credits a trusted management team that he finds great support in, both professionally and personally. But, of course, when he’s in the Octagon, Pimblett is very much on his own. During his UFC debut, “the Baddy” was rocked in the opening moments by some thunderous blows by his opponent, Luigi Vendramini. At that point observers were quickly righting him off. So, how did he suck it up, move forward, and score a knockout before the end of the first round?
“I always have 100% belief in myself, do you know what I mean?” says Pimblett. “I don’t think anyone can beat me. On that one, I heard DC (Daniel Cormier on commentary) saying ‘he’s losing this round’ and that just made my bite down on my gum shield and want to take (Vendramini’s) head off. And it worked.”
Still, when it comes to social media, Pimblett doesn’t give trolls any of his head space. “I don’t even look at them anymore. I leave them to it, because people are just jealous and they want to be in your shoes,” he says.
Paddy Pimblett Knows how to Fuel Up
Pimblett recently celebrated is the launch of his own pre-workout: “Paddy “The Baddy” Everything Ultimate Pre-Workout. His latest milestone is a collaboration with Applied Nutrition and ABE Nation. How surreal must it be for the “boy done good” so see his likeness staring back at him on a tub of pre-workout?
“It’s quite funny, to be honest,” says Pimblett, who is just as excited about working with the Liverpool-based company Applied Nutrition, as he is about being featured on the packaging. “It is even better, you know what I mean? It’s nice, being able to give back to something local. A local business. That’s what I like to do and the brand that I’ve partnered up with is home grown from Liverpool.”
Unlike other questionable celebrity endorsements, Pimblett is a genuine advocate of the product. In particular, he like the 200mg hit of caffeine because he doesn’t like coffee. “I don’t like coffee at all. I don’t like the taste of it,” says the MMA star. “That’s why getting involved in this sort of thing made so much sense to me. I don’t like coffee and I know several of my friends don’t like coffee. I like using the pre-workout to wake me up in the morning because, without them, I’m all doom and gloom. But when I have a little kick of caffeine it wakes me up.
The Evolution of Paddy Pimblett Continues
While still learning at 28 years of age, Pimblett has already gained a lot of wisdom during his epic journey.. So, what words of advice would he go back and give himself at 18? “Listen to people,” says Pimblett. “Don’t think you know best all the time. Do as you’re told now and then,” he says with a smile. The future certainly looks bright. And with the MMA world at his feet, pro wrestling fans can’t help but notice that the fighter has a resemblance to the late, great Owen Hart. Many stars from the world of combat have entered WWE; from Mike Tyson, to Brock Lesnar and Ronda Rousey.
Could “The Baddy” be headed in the same direction somewhere down the track? “My favorite wrestler was Shawn Michaels. Before my MMA career is over, I do want to ‘Sweet Chin Music’ someone,” he says in reference to Michaels’ finishing move.
He doesn’t rule out stepping into the squared circle for WWE or AEW. “We’ll see what happens.” Still, Pimblett has plenty of unfinished business in the UFC, where he’s expected to return following ankle surgery.