Before Vitor Belfort and Luke Rockhold share the Octagon at UFC on FX 8 just hours from now at the Santa Catarina, Brazil, the middleweight contenders were forced to endure one final formality:
For mixed martial arts (MMA) fighters, the weigh-ins are the last time they will see stand face-to-face (see the staredown pic here) with their opponent before colliding inside the cage. Some fighters are casual when stepping on the scale, others use the moment as one final opportunity to try and intimidate their opponent.
Just moments after successfully making weight, Belfort and Rockhold appeared on the FUEL TV weigh-in show to share some finals thoughts on their bout with correspondent Heidi Androl less than 24-hours away from UFC on FX 8.
First, the former UFC light heavyweight champion "The Phenom" spoke about the heated stare down, what he said to Rockhold, if it bothers him that Rockhold is the betting favorite and what fans should expect from him in the Octagon.
On What He Said To Rockhold During The Staredown:
"Don't come close. Don't come, don't come now."
On The Staredown:
"He's scared. He's scared already. He feels the heat."
On Rockhold Being The Betting Favorite:
"[It doesn't bother me] at all. I'm in God's odds. I'm not in peoples odds."
On What Fans Can Expect From Him:
"You doubt me, I prove you wrong. God's number one, he's in my favor. No weapon against me shall prosper, you watch."
Rockhold, the final middleweight champion of the now-defunct Strikeforce organization, also spoke with Androl on the FUEL TV weigh-in broadcast, sharing his thoughts on the weigh-in staredown, Belfort saying he's scared and the potential effects of his 10-month layoff against a quick starter like Belfort.
On The Staredown:
"I didn't initiate it, he did it at the press conference and he did it again, so I'm not going to stand for nothing -- I got no respect for that. I'm a fighter, I'm going to come in there and do my job."
On Belfort Saying He's Scared:
"I'm scared? I'm scared? Yeah. I have no words for that. I became champion [in Strikeforce], I stayed champion, and Belfort's going to find that out."
On Returning From A Long Layoff:
"Vitor's always explosive off the bat, but he's messed up in his own head. He's got to build himself up through a lot of different things. His team and these things where he thinks I'm scared he builds it in his head. The reality is if you're in the MMA world and you know Vitor Belfort - he's scared, I'm coming for him and I'm going to kick his ass."
Just one more hour until showtime, Maniacs!
MMAmania.com will provide LIVE round-by-round, blow-by-blow coverage of the entire UFC on FX 8 fight card, starting with the Facebook "Prelims," which are scheduled to begin at 4:30 p.m. ET, right on through the FUEL TV-televised under card bouts at 6 p.m. ET and then main card action, which is slated to begin at 9 p.m. ET on FX channel.
For the entire UFC on FX 8 fight card and line up click here. To catch up on all the news and notes for this weekend's "Belfort vs. Rockhold" event hit up our comprehensive archive by clicking here.