Zion Tomlinson Sr. is a 21-year-old heavyweight prospect in the sport of bare knuckle after picking up a first round knockout win over Harrison Aiken at Bare Knuckle FC's Toe The Line Series 2 in October 2020.
Since then, this Roanake, Virginia native has been making waves in calling out one of the promotion's top stars in Ulysses (Uly) Diaz.
"I'm not very impressed with Uly," Tomlinson said. "All throughout his career he has had easy fights. He has a padded record. He hasn't fought anybody who will punch him in his face. He gets all this hype but that's all it is, hype."
While Tomlinson may not have a favorable opinion of the man who has the fastest knockout in combat sports history, he will not be fighting Uly Diaz at BKFC 16 on March 19. Instead, Tomlinson will be toeing the line opposite Tyler Hill who is making his bare knuckle debut.
When asked what he knew about his upcoming opponent, the momentum in Tomlinson's verbal warfare did not slow down in any way.
"I know he's a prick," Tomlinson said of Hill. "I know he is taller than me and he likes to throw overhands, but I ain't gonna fall for it."
Tomlinson seems to have chosen to compete regularly in bare knuckle of his previous sport of mixed martial arts.
"I've been training real hard," he said. "I'm trying not to break my hand again. I know where my punches are going to be landing now that I took some time off from training in order to heal. I'll go back to MMA if the right opportunity presents itself but right now I'm focusing on becoming the youngest champion in BKFC history.
"I'm going to go in there and embarrass him (Hill)," Tomlinson continued. "I'm going to put him to sleep."
Tomlinson's confidence continued as he detailed the goals he would like to achieve while competing in bare knuckle.
"If I can get to 3-0, I should be knocking on the door for a title shot opportunity," he said.
Headlining BKFC-16 is a lightweight grudge match between Leonard ‘Bad Boy’ Garcia, (18-13-1), fighting out of Lubbock, TX and Joe ‘The Hitman’ Elmore, (13-12), of Atlanta, GA.
Co-featured and making his BKFC debut, Former Boxing World Champion DeMarcus ‘Chop Chop’ Corley of Washington, D.C. clashes with BKFC veteran Reggie ‘Eaz-E’ Barnett Jr. of Virginia Beach, VA in a bantamweight bout.
Tickets for BKFC-16 are Now On-Sale starting at $55 and may be purchased through the BKFC website, www.bkfc.com. The Biloxi Civic Center is located at 578 Howard Street, Biloxi, MS 39530. Doors will open on the night of the event at 6PMCT with the first bell at 7PMCT.