Speaking of Pettis, he was considered the number-one contender heading into your fight. Now that you've taken him out of the equation, Henderson has defeated Jim Miller, and Melvin Guillard recently came up short against Joe Lauzon, that pretty much leaves you and Ben as the last two contenders standing. Have you received confirmation that a win over Henderson will earn you a title shot
To me, a big win earns a title shot. I want to win big so that there is no question about my title shot. Everyone hyped Melvin Guillard as the obvious next shot, but then he lost in the first-round to Joe (Lauzon). So, I figure with a big win, then it's my turn for that title shot.
This will be your 15th consecutive fight with the UFC in more than five years. Sticking around with the organization for that long is quite an achievement within itself, but your current four-fight winning streak is the longest of your UFC career. Is there anything in particular that you can attribute your recent success to, or do you feel it's more-so a product of your experience?
I really was able to bring my training together and become more of a professional. So, as I became more experienced, my training got more organized. That is probably the biggest thing.
Your fight will serve as co-main event for UFC on FOX 1, which will mark the promotion's debut on the Fox Network. As we've discussed, you've been with the promotion for several years now and therefore present for many of the milestones reached by the organization. Can you talk a little bit about what it's been like as a fighter to grow with the UFC and to now be a part of such a landmark event?
It's amazing really. To come from a wrestling background that doesn't really have a professional circuit, other then the Olympics or the WWE, it is amazing to think that now I’m on PPV and will be on Fox. It's just unreal and awesome. Plus, I meet so many people that just want a picture or to say hello - the fans are usually really cool. I feel that I have been a great ambassador for the UFC, and I hope to continue that trend.
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