There are few men like Donald Cerrone.
In just eight months "Cowboy" has laid waste to a quartet of fallen opponents, seemingly with ease, while simultaneously earning the "Fight Night" trifecta for his service. That's $215,000 just in post-fight bonus money if you were counting.
With such an incredible year at his back, and a fifth bout against Nate Diaz upcoming, it stands within reason to suspect Cerrone is eyeing a vacation after UFC 141. Though doing so would be rookie mistake. In fact, the 28-year-old only wants to ramp things up for 2012.
"My two goals next year (are), I'm trying to work with the PBR (Professional Bull Riders, Inc.). I actually want to ride," Cerrone recently said in an interview with Sherdog. "I want to work with the UFC and work with the PBR and make a publicity junket out of it. Get on one of the baddest m-----------s. Why not? I'm (also) gonna become a pro wakeboarder next year, that's one of the goals I got."
While it may be easy to scoff at the idea of a fighter coexisting in so many facets, it's getting harder and harder to doubt Cerrone.
Prior to becoming a mixed martial artist, the lightweight was a pro bull rider for the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association. Needless to say, being employed by the UFC hasn't seemed to hamper his love for the sport.
A classic adrenaline junkie, "Cowboy" confesses to occasionally challenging bulls before his fights, including a recent summer brawl with Vagner Rocha at UFC 131. The admission would be startling from any other member of the UFC roster, but for Cerrone it's just another unique footnote in one of 2011's premiere breakout stories.
"He's such a character," explained Cerrone's coach Mike Winkeljohn. "I just heard the other day that he went wakeboarding the day before weigh-ins on his last fight. What a crazy kid. You got to love him. He's that guy."