The Ultimate Fighting Championship held a media conference call today for “UFC 123: Rampage vs. Machida” which takes place Saturday, Nov. 20, in Detroit, Mich. Headliners Lyoto Machida and Quinton Jackson were on the call as well as co-headliners B.J. Penn and Matt Hughes.
Speaking for ProMMAnow.com, I asked Rampage if he was concerned at all about having to chase down Lyoto to keep the fight exciting. He assured me he was worried about nothing. He had put in the necessary training, he was well-prepared and the fight was going to go the way it is going to go.
Here are some notes and audio from the call:
UFC 123 conference call audio
Got right back to training. Tried to put together a fight with a few lightweights, that fell through and Dana offered him the fight with Hughes.
Training away from his family in Honolulu. I think if I feel good, I may fight a few more fights at 170. It’s not out of the question to fight at both weights.
I brought in some good training partners. Coming off two losses I probably would have fought anyone Dana offered me.
This is the only thing that keeps me feeling like I have something to live for. When I got the text from Dana about the fight with Matt, I got chicken skin and I was like, now I got a reason to live for a couple more months.
I did have a lot of obligations but one more paycheck this year would be nice. Right after the Spring I can come back and fight. I had a lot of obligations for this Fall and Spring. At 37 I have to train smarter, not harder.
I’ve been doing a lot of my training in Salt Lake City. Jeremy Horn has a lot of great grapplers out there.
There is extra motivation here, a lot on the line. If I lose, it’s like losing three fights to BJ and if I win, it’s like winning three fights. This is a great fight for me and it’s a great fight for BJ too. I’m not Frankie Edgar, I don’t move like Frankie Edgar. I’m sure BJ is really liking this fight style-wise because I’m a lot different than his last opponent.
I kind of felt like I needed to take this fight.
I’m kind of at the point now, it’s whatever they offer. If Dana comes at me and wants me to take a run at the title that’s fine, but I’m set. … I really don’t care to hold any more records. I’m just ready to go out and have a good time and compete. I still love to compete.
I don’t know anyone that would turn down a title shot.
I changed training camps and got around some more positive people.
For the record I wanted to say, I watched the A-Team, I loved it and thought Rampage did a great job. That comes from the heart too Rampage. I walked into the theater not knowing what to think and walked out with a big smile on my face saying, “That’s my buddy up there.”
He feels a lot of pressure is off his back after the loss because a lot of fans looked at him like he was going to be this undefeated champion for a long time.
I’ve been more focused and had a lot of time to train. This time my body is doing good and I’m more prepared. I’m just thinking about this fight and not looking past it.
I did the job and got paid. I don’t give a f*ck what they say about the A-Team.
When asked if he was worried about Lyoto’s elusive style of the pressure being on him to make the fight exciting – I’m not worried about nothing. The fight is going to go the way it’s going to go. I’m well prepared and that is all I can do.