Terrance McKinney promises he doesn’t spent much time looking at comments about himself after wins or losses, but it’s also impossible to completely deafen the noise surrounding his performances.
That’s why the 28-year-old lightweight celebrated his win over Mike Breeden at UFC Vegas 78 with an infamous professional wrestling crotch-chop made famous by the Degeneration-X faction several years ago in World Wrestling Entertainment.
While McKinney maintains he doesn’t let the discourse surrounding his career to affect him positively or negatively, he still felt the need to answer the critics after suffering two straight losses prior to his victory this past Saturday night.
“Cause you know they can suck it,” McKinney said on The MMA Hour. “They asked me a question about [the haters], and I had to send them my response.”
Despite constant activity on platforms like Twitter and Instagram, McKinney revealed that he doesn’t actually run his own social media accounts, which helps him avoid a lot of those kinds of comments. Regardless, he does his best to never allow other people’s opinions to affect him, even if it does feel good to prove them wrong every now and again.
“It’s not my first time people talking about me,” McKinney said. “It’s not my first rodeo. For me, it’s just more motivation. It just makes me more hungry. Like I tell people, the journey ain’t done until it’s done. Everything is just a learning step, even the wins, where I can take something away to get better.”
Since first arriving in the UFC, McKinney has built a reputation as a go-big-or-go-home type fighter, which has made for some exhilarating wins but that has also produced a few heartbreaking losses.
In particular with his last two fights, McKinney fell by knockout to Ismael Bonfim back in January and then he was submitted by Nazim Sadykhov in July. McKinney plans to file an appeal over that latter loss after accusing Sadykhov of cheating by grabbing the fence multiple times during their fight, which he believes played a major part in the eventual outcome.
Even with those setbacks, McKinney never lost faith in his ability to bounce back, and he kept an upbeat attitude through it all. He believes that demeanor somehow just rubs people the wrong way.
“I just think people just hate to see me smiling,” McKinney said. “They expect me to get down on myself and that’s just not how my mom raised me. That’s not how adversity built me. Losses don’t kill me. They say what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger and I truly believe that.”
If anything, McKinney has learned to embrace his biggest critics, because one way or another, at least people are talking about him.
“Like my mom always told me, if you’re doing something right, there’s going to be haters,” McKinney said. “So when I see the haters, I know I’m doing something right. You’re doing something right if you’ve got the haters so that’s how I take it.”