UFC 302: Grant Dawson Downplays Green Loss, Likens it to Makhachev-Martins

Lightweight Grant Dawson looks to rebound from the first loss of his UFC career this Saturday at UFC 302 in Newark, paired up with a local name in Joe Solecki.

Dawson (20-2-1) will bring a new nickname with him this weekend, in addition to dealing with his first-ever loss in the promotion: KGD. “It stands for ‘King Grant Dawson,'” the 30-year old from Wisconsin told Cageside Press in a recent interview. “I’m real big on ‘he who has the gold rules,’ and the ‘King’ nickname was already taken. I was hoping to be able to steal it from Bobby Green, but that didn’t go so well. So he can keep the ‘King’ name, I’ll stick with ‘KGD.'”

A lot has been made of Dawson being knocked out by Green in just 33 seconds after starting his UFC run at 8-0-1. Not much has changed in terms of his approach, however.

“Not really. I’ve always been a big believe that there’s going to be bumps along the road,” Dawson explained. “This is going to sound really weird, but I didn’t get into this sport to beat Bobby Green. I got into this sport to be a world champ, and I know there’s guys in the comments already typing out that ‘if you can’t beat Bobby Green, you can’t be a world champion’ but we all know that’s bogus, we all know that that’s horsesh*t.”

As an example, Dawson offered Islam Makhachev, the UFC’s current lightweight champ who happens to headline the card in Newark. “Islam Makhachev lost to a guy that lost seven fights in a row after knocking him unconscious, and now everybody thinks he’s the second coming of Jesus Chris, or Allah maybe I guess.”

That would be Adriano Martins, the lone loss on Makhachev’s record. The be fair to Martins, he lost five of his next six, with another fight going to a No Contest. Point made, however. As for the doubters, “I know people are doubting me, I don’t really give a sh*t,” exclaimed Dawson. “I’m going to do what I’ve got to do to get this win.”

On the match-up with Joe Solecki, meanwhile, Dawson pointed out that they nearly mirror one another.

“I think we have a very similar style. We’re almost the same guy kind of. I think that he’s got a little bit better jiu-jitsu off his back, and I’ve got a little bit better wrestling. I think the fans that really enjoy grappling are going to enjoy this fight.”

Watch our full interview with UFC 302 lightweight Grant Dawson above.