Monday's UFC 135 media conference call featured UFC bantamweight champion Dominick Cruz and number one contender Demetrious "Mighty Mouse" Johnson. Also aboard were heavyweight co-headliners Stefan Struve and Pat Barry. UFC President Dana White was not present.
The call was a fairly straightforward affair, with both Cruz and Johnson displaying ample respect towards one another. Facing the biggest opportunity of his career, the 25-year-old "Might Mouse" was finally able to quit his day job as a construction worker and commit to being a fulltime professional fighter, which he hopes will improve his preparation and levels of fatigue.
Likewise, both Barry and Struve displayed similar respect towards each other, and stated their intentions to ensure an exciting fight.
UFC on Versus 6 will be held on October 1st at the Verizon Center in Washington D.C. For more analysis, follow MMA Nation (@MMANation) on Twitter.
Here are partial notes from each participant. Full audio is coming.
- My career is bigger than beating Faber. That was just one of those I had to do for myself.
- It's real easy getting up for this fight. Setting goals for myself and getting ready for Demetrious.
- You have a choice going into a fight. You can either get along and fight, or butt heads and fight anyways.
- It feels like I'm back in the WEC a bit. The level of media that you are responsible (for Versus) is chopped in half.
- (Johnson) kind of has the momentum behind him. On top of that, he's considered an underdog, and I know how that feels. I know the fire it lights under you to hear you're an underdog. He's got a big heart, great cardio, good speed, and good rhythm. He fights off the rhythm.
- Range nullifies speed. He's never dealt with anyone that has my range.
- Reach is a big deal as long as you know how to use it.
- I wouldn't say you ever get used to having your face on the posters. What you get used to is all the media, all the hype, all the trash talking on Twitter.
- You learn that you're your own worst enemy. How you handle each experience that comes toward you.
- I'm in the one percentile in the world that gets to do a job that I love and I get to do it in front of millions of people.
- Miguel Torres didn't finish Demetrious on the ground, and Demetrious controlled the fight. Torres was okay on his back thinking he was going to get the finish, and he didn't get the finish. You've got to know where you are in the scorecards.
- The only thing people remember is your last fight.
- I'd rather keep my life very cheap, that way, god forbid, I get my eye socket busted and I'm out for a year, I don't have a stack of bills waiting for me.
- I haven't really put much thought into moving to 145 pounds (to fight Jose Aldo), but I never turn down opportunities.
- I live in the gym. It's about every single fight coming out and improving, adding something to your arsenal.
- When I fought Charlie Valencia was when I really started to believe that I could piece together things I work in training. How you train, how you practice, is the way you're going to perform.
- I think Jon Jones is showing what you need to do to be a dominant champion. He's keeping people guessing from round one to round five. The person that beats Jon Jones is the person that has great striking fundamentals and can put him on his back. If you don't put him on his back he gets good rhythm.
- I don't think I'm being overlooked. It's just the way the world sees me; the story of my life.
- I think the transition (from the WEC) has gone very smoothly. It's been nice for the lighter weights to get a bigger stage on the UFC.
- I am not working fulltime any more. I gave that up once I got the call I was fighting Dominick. Before that I was working construction, 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. Now I'm a fulltime fighter and I can dedicate myself to beating Dominick Cruz. I'm hoping it's made a huge difference. Before I rarely got any rest.
- It's so hard to train and prepare for someone like Dominick. He is a great champion.
- I look at this bout the same as any other.
- I compare myself to Frankie Edgar. I'm a smaller guy and if I want to fight in two weight classes I could.
- I think Jon Jones puts it into people's heads that he can finish whenever he wants. Anderson (Silva), Jon Jones, and Jose Aldo, those guys try to kill you. I don't see anyone beating them for a long time.
- In all actuality, I personally don't believe range is going to be that big of an issue in this fight. I haven't run across many heavyweights that are shorter than me. I'm accustomed to guys that are taller than me, just like Stefan is accustomed to guys that are taller than him.
- I think this could turn out to be a really awesome fight, to where his long arms don't matter and my short arms don't matter.
- I found a guy named "Black Struve," his name is Maurice Green, 6'9". He was the guy I brought in to help with the height.
- You hear people say 'living the dream.' All I've wanted to do since I was a little kid, I wanted to be a ninja. I was a Van Damme fanatic. Ninja Turtles; playing Street Fighter with Sagat.
- I've accepted that sometime you're going to lose. If I lose the fight, yeah that sucks, but you have to learn from it. There's winning and there's losing experiences. If you wake up tomorrow and your the same person, then you're not growing.
- It's a real life video game. I'm short Sagat. That's all I ever wanted to be. And I get to be paid for it? Ridiculous.
- Before the Kongo fight, you always hear people say anything is possible. After that last experience, anything is possible. Maybe I was a little overzealous. Anyone can win. You can't sleep on anybody.
- Jon Jones has the Mike Tyson effect, same as Anderson Silva. Everyone's going to lose, but someone has to get in the ring with them and not be scared of them.
- I'm really curious to see what happens when someone punches (Jones) in his head.
- The last fight I made a stupid mistake. I should have used my reach better.
- I'm always training to learn how to use my reach the way I should.
- I think someone with great leglocks could beat Jon Jones.