You can argue that the lightweight division in the UFC is the deepest and most talented group of fighters in the entire sport. That being said, if you’re a fighter trying to get noticed at 155lbs, you need to make a statement.
That’s exactly what Des Green did in his UFC debut against previously unbeaten Josh Emmett, the statement being: ‘The Predator’ is here to stay.
“Practice, practice, practice”
Cageside Press recently caught up with Green to talk about his UFC debut, octagon jitters, his upcoming bout against Rustam Khabilov, and more.
I spoke with Green before his first fight in the UFC, and all superstition aside, I wanted to speak with ‘The Predator’ before his upcoming bout. “The only thing I’m superstitious about it getting the hard work in,” Green said. “Practice, practice, practice, it’s all about improving and pushing on to the next challenge.”
It’s no secret that the UFC is the ‘Big Show’, for almost every fighter taking that walk to the octagon for the first time is intense, so much so that there is an adjective for it – octagon jitters.
“I’m 25 fights in and I’m nervous as s**t before each one,” Green said about octagon jitters. “I guess there is some more nerves, but its more excitement, but now that it’s out of the way, its back to business.”
“I’m going to beat him, and take his number”
And back to business it will be at UFC Fight Night 115 in Rotterdam, Netherlands, as ‘The Predator’ faces his toughest test to date in Khabilov.
Although the lightweight from Rochester, New York, isn’t ranked in the UFC yet, he does pay close attention. “Hell, yea I care about the rankings,” Green assured Cageside Press. “As soon as I found out he (Rustam Khabilov) was ranked #16, I was like, let’s go. I’m going to beat him and take his number and keep going from there.”
Green has such a great grind you out, iron will mentality that he takes to the octagon. I was curious as to who he emulated his style after. “GSP and Anderson Silva, those guys I really looked up to, and in my later years, Jon Jones. Just the dominance that all those guys have, that’s what I want.”
“I’m looking to make a statement”
Dominance is something that the former Tristar product knows a thing or two about: 13 of his 20 victories have been by unanimous decision, but don’t anticipate his next fight going to the judges. “Expect excitement, I’m going for the finish, I’m looking to make a statement, another win over a proven guy (Khabilov) and people will start paying attention to me.”
It’s hard to argue against that. If Green is able to do as he says and knock off yet another tough ranked UFC vet, fans and match makers alike will have to take notice.
Don’t miss Des Green back in action at UFC Fight Night 115: Struve vs Volkov, live in Rotterdam, Netherlands on September 2.