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brad-pickett-14.jpgBrad Pickett isn’t likely pleased his win over Mike Easton this past Saturday in Sweden was a split decision.

But he’s willing to give the judges the benefit of the doubt. After all, one judge’s 30-27 apparently is another’s 29-28 the other way.

Pickett (23-7 MMA, 3-2 UFC) admits Easton (13-3 MMA, 3-2 UFC) gave him a stiff challenge at UFC on FUEL TV 9, which took place at Ericsson Globe Arena in Stockholm. In fact, Easton pushing the pace more than Pickett expected meant he even needed a minute to catch his breath toward the end of the second round.

“When I looked at the fight, it was really close,” Pickett on Thursday told MMAjunkie.com Radio (www.mmajunkie.com/radio). “A 30-27 could be a really close fight, or you could have a complete white-wash. Personally, I think the first two rounds were really close rounds. I believe I definitely took the first one. If I had to give him any, maybe the second round. But still, in my eyes, I did enough to win. The third round, I definitely won.

“But it was a great fight, and a fun fight to be involved in. He was tough. … At one point, I got a little bit tired, and that’s because he brought a lot of forward pressure.”

But with that challenge out of the way, Pickett got back in the win column after what he admits was a poor performance in a split decision loss to Eddie Wineland in December.

He has wins in three of his past four fights, and while there are a few names he’d be glad to fight next, the key for him right now is getting back in the octagon reasonably quickly.

“I’m not in this sport just to be a number,” the American Top Team-trained Brit said. “I want to be someone in the sport. And I’m not getting any younger. I want to get as far as I can as quick as I can. It would be nice to get a jump with these fights with someone ranked above me. But when I look at the division now, I’ve already fought five of the top 10.”

When he takes a look around at some of the names he hasn’t fought yet, he does see a handful of names. He also sees the calendar laid out in front of him.

With a wedding planned for the end of September, he’d love to get a fight in by August. Then he can have his nuptials, have his honeymoon, then come back and hope for one more before 2013 winds down.

And staring right back at him is an Aug. 17 date for the first UFC on FOX SPORTS 1 show, which takes place in Boston. It’s just a matter of against whom.

“One fight I do look at above me that makes sense is Michael McDonald,” he said. “Me and him would be a very exciting fight. Maybe the winner of Scott Jorgensen and Urijah (Faber) could be a possibility. But I just want another fight with an opponent like Mike Easton – it was a fun fight to have.

“I’d rather fight and keep myself active than not fight and wait around till a fight happens. Maybe someone like Brian Bowles, (Takeya) Mizugaki – all these guys would be great fights. I’m not calling anyone out. It’s just fights that make sense. It’s never, ever anything personal to me.”

For complete coverage of UFC on FUEL TV 9, stay tuned to the UFC Events section of the site. And for the latest on the UFC’s upcoming schedule, stay tuned to the UFC Rumors section of MMAjunkie.com.

MMAjunkie.com Radio broadcasts Monday-Friday at noon ET (9 a.m. PT) live from Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino’s Race & Sports Book. The show is hosted by “Gorgeous” George Garcia, MMAjunkie.com lead staff reporter John Morgan and producer Brian “Goze” Garcia. For more information or to download past episodes, go to www.mmajunkie.com/radio.

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