And it's not for the faint of heart.
Streaking UFC lightweight Donald Cerrone will try and stake his claim in the 155-pound title hunt when he takes on Octagon rookie Vagner Rocha at UFC 131: "Dos Santos vs. Carwin" this Saturday night (June 11) in Vancouver.
The Brazilian is a late-replacement for Mac Danzig, who was forced to withdraw from the upcoming pay-per-view card after tearing a muscle in training camp.
Rocha got his hands dirty competing for Bellator Fighting Championships in addition to a lone appearance under the Strikeforce banner, amassing a 6-1 record with five finishes. Four of his wins have come by way of submission, which shouldn't come as a surprise considering his association with world-renowned grappler Pablo Popovitch.
"It’s hard to get motivated just to train, and the training you want, and for Mac I was. I was ready to go in there and show him that I’m not just any guy, I deserve to be there ... Whatever your reason is for pulling out of the fight is, now you just put a target for me to come and get you. You want to talk shit and now you get the fight and you get scared and want to pull out? Pussy. That’s how I feel about that. They tried calling Cole (Miller) and he said he was injured, too. That little bitch don’t want to fight either. I don’t really know much about [Vagner Rocha]. I don’t even know how to pronounce his name ... I heard he’s got good Popovitch Jiu-Jitsu. Well, this isn’t jiu-jitsu. So I hate to break his bubble, but we’re not going in world championship jiu-jitsu. I’m going to go in there, he’s got to start in my world. He’s got to get me to the ground, we’ll see how it goes for him."
Cerrone is the winner of three consecutive bouts dating back to his World Extreme Cagefighting (WEC) days including a "Fight of the Night" performance when he choked out Paul Kelly at UFC 126 earlier this year.
Can the "Cowboy" lasso the UFC rookie and ride his way into title contention?
UFC 131 features a re-worked main event of massive proportions when Shane Carwin steps in for the injured Brock Lesnar to battle Brazilian bomber Junior dos Santos for the right to face Cain Velasquez for the heavyweight championship later this year.
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