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Interview: Jon Fitch talks UFC 141 match-up with Johny Hendricks, breaks down Lesnar-Overeem

Hosts Darren McFarland and Brad Hopkins, along with Chris Pappas and Ed Clay, welcomed UFC welterweight Jon Fitch as a guest on the 1st Quarter radio show on 102.5 FM The Game this week to talk about his upcoming fight with Johny Hendricks which takes place this Friday, Dec. 30, at UFC 141 in Las Vegas.

Fitch has not been inside the Octagon since February when he fought to a draw with former champion B.J. Penn. Since then he has had shoulder surgery.  He discussed the long layoff, his recovery from surgery and his eagerness to get back in the cage. He also denied that ring rust would be an issue.

Fitch shared his thoughts on Hendricks:

“Johny Hendricks has got heavy hands, was an All-American wrestler from Oklahoma state and has got pretty good jiu-jitsu. So I mean, all-around he’s a good fighter and I think quite honestly, he could probably beat a lot of other big names out there, but he hasn’t had that opportunity yet. But I’m not going to be his first one, so he’s going to have to do that on his comeback fight.”

Fitch discussed his progression and development from a one-dimensional wrestler to an MMA fighter and explained the point in his career when he decided to become a full-time fighter and made the move to American Kickboxing Academy (AKA) in San Jose, Calif.

He talked about his goal of earning the interim title while welterweight champ Georges St-Pierre is sidelined with a knee injury and said it is the “golden ticket” to his ultimate goal of earning another shot at St-Pierre. Fitch also discussed St-Pierre’s chances of coming back and being as good as he was after suffering the ACL injury and also talked about how things would be different if he gets another shot at the champ.

Fitch gave his breakdown of the UFC 141 main event between Brock Lesnar and Alistair Overeem:

“If Lesnar is able to get a takedown pretty quick and Overeem is not able to get up right away, it’s going to be a quick fight and Brock is going to win. Also, if Overeem isn’t able to keep his distance and knock Lesnar out probably pretty quickly sometime in the first round, I don’t see his cardio standing up to Brock’s, along with Brock’s size. We’ve seen in the past that Brock is pretty durable so Overeem is going to have to really hurt him and hurt him early.”

Following the interview with Fitch, the guys preview the UFC 141 main card. Listen to the full interview with Fitch and the UFC 141 breakdown below.

Check out previous episodes of the 1st Quarter on 102.5 FM The Game featuring interviews with the sport’s biggest names, including last week’s interview with UFC heavyweight Frank Mir.

Sports fans can listen to 102.5 FM online 24/7 or tune in every Thursday morning for LIVE MMA talk at www.1025thegame.com. ProMMAnow.com (www.prommanow.com) is the exclusive home of the 1st Quarter’s MMA archives.

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