Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) lightweight contender Donald Cerrone will square off against another highly ranked opponent in Dennis Siver at UFC 137 in Las Vegas, Nevada, on Sat., Oct. 29, 2011.
Cerrone once again took the fight on short notice when Sam Stout was forced to withdraw. It's a bold mentality, which has endeared his to company president Dana White, as well as mixed martial arts (MMA) fans. So, too, is his exciting style, which typically results in him finishing fights early.
Last night (Mon., Oct. 24), "Cowboy" sat down with Pro MMA Radio's Larry Pepe to discuss his upcoming bout, the way he trains and how he views life in general. His fight this weekend at the Mandalay Bay Events center will be his fourth in eight months, a break-neck pace in a sport in which the top fighters normally compete just twice annually.
But, for Cerrone, it never matters much. The approach is simple. The opponent is irrelevant. The game plan is always the same:
"I'm gonna go in there and impose my will and do what I do and not worry about what they do. You know, I'm fighting (hesitates) Siver...I don't care what he's gonna do. I don't give a s---. I know what I'm gonna do. I'm gonna get in there and whip his ass so I can get to Lake Havasu and play on my boat. That's what I'm gonna do."
According to Cerrone, when he saw there was an open slot on the UFC 137 card, he proactively jumped at the opportunity. Some fighters wait for their phones to ring and hope their numbers get called.
Not this "Cowboy:"
"I called them. I saw that Stout got hurt so I made the call. I said, 'S---, I see Stout's out. Do you guys need a guy?' They were like, 'Uh...yeah!' That's how it happened. I stay ready most of the time. I stay in shape. I'm constantly trying to evolve and get better. Like right now, me and Leonard (Garcia) are down in Texas buying a boat. I'm ready for this fight. Everyone's like, 'Oh my God! Are you not worried about this fight?' I'm like, 'Yeah, but I'm not gonna dedicate my life to it. I'm not gonna quit gettin' p---- and quit drinkin' and all this other stuff. It's not the center of my life, you know what I mean? It's just something I do."
So what does the big picture look like for Cerrone? Some fighters will tell you that they train all day and only dream of being a champion. And while Cerrone wouldn't mind wearing the strap, for him, it's all about the "Benjamins."
Earn 'em while you still can:
"A title would be cool, because a title means more money. So, if that's what I gotta do to get more money, that's what I want. I do this for my career. Other than that, I don't really care about it. I'd rather be f------ playin' on my toys, you know? So, this is what I do for money. You interview me for money. If that's what I gotta do to make the big bucks, then hell yeah! Bring that s--- on!"
They say you always remember your last loss, no matter how sweet the last win was. This sentiment rings true for Cerrone, whose last lost came to Ben Henderson at WEC 48 on April 24, 2010. "Bendo" was able to submit Cerrone with a guillotine choke in the first round.
A victory would certainly put Cerrone in the title picture, but for him, he's more concerned about wiping his slate clean, once and for all.
He wants revenge first:
"A win, to me, let's me say, 'Hey, Ben Henderson. I want my win back, dog!' That's what it says to me. I don't care about nothin' else. I care about that. Henderson, he's a great guy, a great fighter. I ain't got nothin' bad to say about the guy but...I'm gonna whip his ass. That's one thing I want."
Predictions are always fun. Some mixed martial artists are reluctant to say, in advance, how they believe a fight will go down. Cerrone didn't sound too worried about what the results will be.
"I know Siver's a one trick pony. He comes out and throws his spinning back kick. I don't think his ground game is very good. I know his wrestling defense is alright. He's gonna stand there and try to throw down and I hope he brings his f------ 'A' game! Let's go! Let's fight! Let's get violent tonight!"
What do you think, Maniacs? Will the UFC 137 match up between Cerrone and Siver live up to the hype? If "Cowboy" gets the win, how close to a title shot will he be?