Beat an opponent where he's strongest? Dumb strategy, says UFC 159's Phil Davis


  • Share on Tumblr
  • submit to reddit

Phil Davis might have said he planned to submit his most recent opponent, Vinny Magalhaes. But if you believe that, then he has some land he’d like to sell you.

“Why would you ever give away your gameplan?” Davis told MMAjunkie.com Radio (www.mmajunkie/radio). “It’s silly. A lot of guys kind of give away their game plan when they’re doing these pre-fight interviews.

“Listen, you’re not getting nothing out of me.”

When the two met at this past Saturday’s UFC 159 event after extended sparring sessions in the media, it wasn’t Davis (11-1 MMA, 7-1 UFC) trying to get the fight to the ground, but Magalhaes (10-6 MMA, 1-3 UFC), who hoped to use his strong suit of jiu-jitsu to win the day.

Instead, the Brazilian found himself eating punch after punch as the fight played out over three rounds. In the end, Davis won a unanimous decision for his crisp striking.

Afterward, some fans wondered aloud whether Davis, a former NCAA Division I national champ at Penn State, was afraid of Magalhaes’ ground game and preferred to avoid it altogether. But Davis said that’s an idea only a fan would have.

“They don’t understand the way things are,” he said. “As simple as it gets, it’s a fight, and you’re in a real fight when you’re out there. There’s three areas that are game: There’s striking, wrestling, and there’s grappling or whatever. If I find a weakness, I will beat you there.”

Not every one subscribes to that theory, of course. Light-heavyweight champion Jon Jones, who headlined UFC 159 at Newark, N.J.’s Prudential Center, said he specifically wanted to beat opponent Chael Sonnen by attacking him at his strongest point, wrestling.

It worked well for “Bones.” The referee saved Sonnen from a serious beating late in the first round as he lay against the cage taking elbows.

Davis, though, said he isn’t the type to want to hurt opponents or prove his dominance through violence. He simply wants to win and move on.

“I don’t need to prove how big of a man I am and fight with some huge ego and try to submit you where you’re strongest just to prove I’m this or that,” he said. “That’s not the way I do things. That’s not the way you win a war. That’s not the way you do anything successfully. Not in competition.”

Now one step closer to competing for the kinds of fights that would put him on the path to meeting Jones, Davis, who this past year was forced to take a six-month layoff due to a knee injury, is confident that he’s taking the right approach to his career.

“It’s just a matter of waiting your turn, and right now, it’s so interesting what might happen in our division if guys start fighting often and Jones is out for a while,” he said. “Hopefully, he comes back pretty soon.”

In the meantime, Davis might get a few jiu-jitsu lessons from Magalhaes, who squashed their beef backstage.

“I definitely want to hit him up and pick his brain,” he said.

For complete coverage of UFC 159, stay tuned to the UFC Events section of the site.

MMAjunkie.com Radio broadcasts Monday-Friday at noon ET (9 a.m. PT) live from Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino’s Race & Sports Book. The show is hosted by “Gorgeous” George Garcia, MMAjunkie.com lead staff reporter John Morgan and producer Brian “Goze” Garcia. For more information or to download past episodes, go to www.mmajunkie.com/radio.

view original article >>

Related News

  • 28 days ago
  • 88 views

The worldwide leader for mixed martial arts and UFC news, MMA News, UFC Rumors, MMA Rankings, Interviews, Videos, UFC Results, and UFC Blog more

  • 28 days ago
  • 120 views

Ronda Rousey says she can beat any BJJ girl in the world, regardless of rules or weight class. UFC champion Ronda Rousey is certainly no stranger to making bold statements about her skills. Whether it's flat out saying she will dominate her UFC opponents, to saying that under the right circumstances she can beat Cain Velasquez, it's just the type of confidence that some athletes have to have with themselves. The former Olympic Judoka is set to face a BJJ black belt in Alexis Davis next, and as s more

  • 22 days ago
  • 560 views

Don’t expect Brian Stann to come to the defense of his former opponent and colleague Chael Sonnen. The retired middleweight and Fox UFC analyst was asked on Twitter Monday if he thought Sonnen’s firing was “just," and he said he thinks it was. According to Shaun Al-Shatti of MMA Fighting, Sonnen, who tested positive for a total of five banned substances in his two recent random drug tests, was terminated by the UFC and Fox Sports this week. The former United States Marine has been a consummate p more

  • 18 days ago
  • 28 views

At the UFC 175 post-fight press conference, focus had already shifted from Chris Weidman’s impressive title defense against Lyoto Machida to whom Weidman will fight next. more

  • 17 days ago
  • 43 views

Chris Weidman answered some important questions throughout his UFC 175 main event against former UFC light heavyweight champion Lyoto Machida. The champ showed he can take a punch, he showed he has the cardio to go five full rounds, and he showed that he can solve the riddle that is Machida's karate style. And according to his striking coach, Ray Longo, he did it all with one hand. Speaking with The Fight Network's John Pollock, Longo said that Weidman's heart and character shone brighter than e more

  • 16 days ago
  • 49 views

The UFC has embarked on a strategy of rapid growth and has significantly increased the number of events they put on, but that strategy comes at a price. The UFC has adopted a strategy for international growth that has a downside for hardcore fans; oversaturation. There were 6 events in a 4 week period from the end of May to the end of June, that's something along the lines of 40 hours of MMA in a month. About 10 hours a week. That's just from official UFC fight cards, not including The Ultimate more

  • 15 days ago
  • 65 views

UFC heavyweight Stefan Struve is in good spirits after suffering an episode backstage at UFC 175 that left him unable to fight Matt Mitrione. Filed under: News, UFC more

  • 13 days ago
  • 29 views

On this week's episode of "The MMA Beat" the panel discusses the cancellation of UFC 176, the UFC's summer schedule as a result of the cancellation, whether Ronda Rousey is the Mike Tyson of MMA, Chris Weidman's profile after his latest title defense, the sad end B.J. Penn's career, the Conor McGregor show, and more. Subscribe to the show on iTunes: audio | video. Music courtesy of APM Music. more

  • 12 days ago
  • 65 views

On episode 46 of "The MMA Beat," the panel discuss the implications of cancelling UFC 176, BJ Penn's unceremonious retirement from the sport, whether Ronda Rousey is the Mike Tyson of MMA, Conor McGregor and more. more