“The Ultimate Fighter 29” bantamweight finalist Brady Hiestand is one fight away from feeling like he’s arrived.

On the main card of UFC on ESPN 30, Hiestand (5-1) will take on Ricky Turcios for a UFC contract and the right to be called the bantamweight winner of “TUF 29.”

Fighting through a strained meniscus during the filming of “TUF” was an unexpected inconvenience, but Hiestand found a way to work through it with the help of the UFC Performance Institue, despite fears it would lead to his removal from the show.

“It was just a small hiccup in the road,” Hiestand told MMA Junkie and other reporters at the UFC Apex on Wednesday. “I didn’t put too much thought into it. I was just focusing on the fights and just winning the fights. …It took me a while to even say anything because I was worried it would get me kicked off the competition.”

Now fully healthy, Hiestand is ready to take on Turcios (10-2) and show his full set of skills on Saturday. “I think you guys saw a good portion of me, but I think there was a little of my game that wasn’t shown on the show,” Hiestand said. “A lot of my kicks weren’t able to be used just because I couldn’t step on that leg weird and a few things like that. It doesn’t matter now, I’m ready to showcase what I got this Saturday.”

During “TUF 29,” Hiestand defeated Josh Rettinghouse by split decision and Vince Murdock by first-round TKO to earn a spot in the finals.

Check out the full media interview with Hiestand in the video above.


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