Bryce “Baby Yaga” Henry gives his performance at BKFC 49 on Friday a “+A” – and that’s likely underselling how deadly he looked in the Squared Circle.
Henry systematically picked apart Tom Shoaff before Shoaff simply decided enough was enough, pulling the plug just 89 seconds into their Co-Main Event matchup in Miami. The performance would’ve been impressive enough against a BKFC rookie, but the fan-favorite Shoaff was entering the Squared Circle for the ninth time since his debut at BKFC 2. Shoaff also entered fight night as the No. 4 contender in the stacked BKFC lightweight division, and all of his previous wins came by stoppage.
“I went there, I didn’t get touched, and I made a veteran look like a regular guy,” Henry says when recapping Friday’s action.
“I just go in there and try to stay pretty.”
Henry is now unbeaten in his first three BKFC fights. He’s still early in his career, but “Baby Yaga” has so far looked phenomenal. Henry is just 22 years old, but the fast-rising Broward County, FL product has fans and industry insiders alike buzzing.
Henry is wise beyond his years, so he knows he needs to keep sharpening his skills and not let his newfound fame and attention go to his head.
“I’ve got to be very, very careful not to get too big-headed because you can be humbled so quickly in this sport,” he says. “I’ve been humbled before in life, so I know I need to calm down and be confident but not cocky.”
That being said, Henry has his sights firmly set on the top of the fully loaded BKFC lightweight division. The King of the weight class, of course, is the legendary Luis “Baboon” Palomino, who’s 9-0 in the Squared Circle and the only fighter to ever grace the top spot in the BKFC Pound-for-Pound rankings.
A showdown with Palomino would be a dream fight for Henry, but he doesn’t pull any punches when asked for a prediction.
“I’ll go out there and hit him with clean, accurate shots. He’ll get frustrated and probably take a knee. Or maybe the doctor will come in and say he’s had enough, or maybe his coaches will decide he’s had enough,” Henry says.
“It might not get past the third round.”