The final Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) 124 pre-fight press conference took place today (Dec. 9) at 1 p.m. EST and featured welterweight champion Georges St. Pierre and number one contender Josh Koscheck.
Both combatants will go to war for the 170-pound crown this Saturday night (Dec. 11) from the Bell Centre in Montreal, Quebec, Canada.
Heavyweights Stefan Struve and Sean McCorkle will also do battle this Saturday night. They were on hand as well for the press conference.
To kick things off, UFC President Dana White announced that this Saturday's event is expected to break UFC attendance records with "over 23,000" fans watching the fights live in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. The event is also expected to break UFC gate records with "over $5 million."
With over 23,000 fans on his side this Saturday, "Rush" won't deny that he'll be under pressure, but he believes that's when he will be at his peak performance.
"It's a special occasion fighting in my hometown. All my family and close friends can see the fight live. The only thing that changes is my opponent. I perform best when under pressure."
Koscheck hopes St. Pierre tries to take his head off.
(In response to getting in St. Pierre's head) Koscheck said, "I think I have. Georges has a whole lot of pressure. There's a lot of pressure for him to come out and put me away. I hope he tries that. I have no pressure." The outspoken welterweight feels he is "prepared" to go "25 minutes" with the champion.
One fighter who is not used to being on the big stage is "Big Sexy" McCorkle. He said jokingly, "I deserve every bit of it." On a more serious note, the heavyweight prospect is just thankful at getting an opportunity to showcase his skills in the Octagon. He said, "I'm literally just happy to be here. I hope Mark Hunt didn't knock me out and I'm in a coma dreaming all of this."
The "Skyscraper" hasn't been too fond of McCorkle's trash talk leading up to their bout. Struve is trying not to let the words of his opponent get in his head, but rather focusing on what he needs to do to come out victorious.
"This is the first time that someone has talked so much before a fight. I don't like the trash talk. When I got into the UFC I was 239 pounds, now I'm 255 maybe more." Struve says he's seen four or five "videos on YouTube" of McCorkle's fights, but believes his size won't matter since he has "five or six guys as big as him" in the gym.
If there's one thing Koscheck's good at besides fighting, it's getting under his opponent's skin. The number one contender says he'll do anything to be successful.
"I'm a bad guy, what can I say? I'm here to win fights, make money and be successful and that's what it's all about. I plan on pissing off 23,000-plus people again by knocking out GSP."
Koscheck isn't the only one to make a prediction for this Saturday's main event.
"I'm doing this job because I want to be the best," said St. Pierre. "I don't want to be number two; I want to be number one. People say the pressure is on me in Montreal, it's true, but I perform best when I'm under pressure. I'm gonna beat him Saturday night."