"I'd be a one-legged 205-er, but I'd still do pretty good."
That's what round and proud UFC heavyweight, Roy Nelson, says he would have to do if he ever decided to shed his trademark beer belly and drop to the stacked light heavyweight division.
The former International Fight League (IFL) heavyweight champion has often been criticized for his physique and many, including UFC President Dana White, have attributed his lack of significant success inside the Octagon to his excessive weight.
Tipping the scales at a very "unmuscular" 260 pounds against Frank Mir at UFC 130 back in May of this year, Roy will look to step back into the eight-walled cage this weekend against Mirko Filipovic as a much slimmer shell of his former self.
In a recent interview with MMANation.com, the not so pudgy pugilist talked about his new bearded look, as well as his seemingly new physique, heavyweight rankings, and next month's colossal heavyweight clash between UFC heavyweight champion Cain Velasquez and Junior Dos Santos on FOX.
When asked about a picture of himself and UFC light heavyweight Forrest Griffin that has gone viral over the last week, depicting a seemingly much slimmer fighter, the modest Nelson states, it's simply an illusion:
"I think it's my beard, it makes my face look smaller and we know Forrest is off and he's a big light heavyweight, he's about 4-5 inches taller than me. I'm probably; the other day when I weighed myself I was 262 so I was two pounds heavier than what I was for against Frank."
When asked about the possibility of dropping to 205 and challenging the top guys in that division, Nelson stated there would have to be major monetary compensation in line and a few surgical procedures to achieve the weight cut:
"I would ask you, 'How much?' and then I'd need to figure out how much I could lose off of liposuction or getting amputated from cutting my leg off. Biologically? I'd have to lose muscle. That's one thing people don't pay attention to is like I wouldn't do a gastric bypass but I'd have to literally cut off my leg and I'd be a one-legged 205-er but I'd still do pretty good."
On the possibility of Junior Dos Santos upsetting Cain Velasquez:
"Upsetting Cain? I don't think it would be an upset so much. I think whoever controls the fight in the first 2 ½ minutes is going to go on to win the fight."
"I don't really know here I'd put them two, but with me, I know I'm game to fight Cain Velasquez, Junior dos Santos. I've been fighting those top dogs all the way ever since I've gotten out of the Ultimate Fighter house. I do think this is the first test for Matt Mitrione so we'll find out on Saturday if he can even get past a guy that's been in the UFC for while. Brendan has definitely shown that he's right there in the middle of the pack beating Gonzaga and then Gonzaga retires so it all depends. For myself, I put myself in the top five easy and then Brendan 5-10 and then 10-15 for Matt."
Finally, Nelson briefly touched on his upcoming bout with "Cro Cop" and how he invisions finishing the fight:
"Nah, I could take all three rounds, take fifteen minutes."
In what could be a potential "loser leaves town" match this weekend at UFC 137 in Las Vegas, Nevada, Nelson will look to rebound from two disappointing back-to-back losses to heavy hitters -- dos Santos and Mir. In the process, he plans to hammer the potential final nail in the coffin in the Croatian's storied career.
"Cro Cop," on the other hand, who is also coming off of back-to-back losses Mir and Schaub, looks to make one final run at glory before hanging up his gloves for good.
Will Roy Nelson's re-dedication to his figh career and new physique give him the advantage to score a victory against the legend, or will Cro Cop provide us with one last left high kick knockout?