For fighters, there are different forms of motivation when it comes to trying to get pumped for an upcoming bout.
For some, it's the simple goal of trying to reach the pinnacle of their field by claiming a world title or perhaps set a new record. For others, hearing their opponent badmouthing them is all the ammunition they need to get ready.
But what if there isn't any bad blood between two fighters? What if there is nothing but mutual respect, how does one get motivated with no "beef?"
According to Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) Light Heavyweight Champion Jon Jones, he and his upcoming foe Alexander Gustafsson -- whom he labels as a "cool kid" -- have no "real" personal issues to settle during their upcoming title fight at UFC 165, which takes place at Air Canada Centre in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, on Sept. 21, 2013.
But, that won't hinder "Bones" from getting motivated to stop "The Mauler."
That's because Jones now fears having an opponent possibly take everything he has worked so hard to secure -- inside and outside the Octagon -- for his family's.
He explains to Rick J. Lee:
"Me and Alexander have no problem with each other to be honest with you. There's intensity between me and him that I love; it's nice, it's refreshing to have, it's a motivational field for us. But, no real problem with him, I actually respect him, he's a cool kid. I've had beef with a lot of different opponents, but, the way I find my motivation with fighting a guy like Gus is, he wants what I have. I can't allow that to happen. The sponsors that I've got aligned with myself, just the life that I'm trying to build for my family's future; I can't allow someone to crush that, so, I need to stay on the prowl."
Indeed, trying to win night in and night out to hold on to a major sponsor such as Nike would undoubtedly be a big motivational boost for anyone.
And as Jones prepares to go for his sixth consecutive title defense -- a mark that would break the record held previously by Tito Ortiz at 205 pounds -- he'll have to be on his "A" game when he faces a fighter who is eager to steal a slice of that lucrative blue-chip sponsor pie.
Even if it comes at the expense of the Jones' family's financial future.