Varner’s first bout against Joe Lauzon was
on Fox 4 “Fight of the Night,” and Varner would like to do it
again in 2013.
“I want to start my retribution tour,” Varner told the Sherdog
Radio Network’s “Cheap Seats” show. “I want to start fighting
the guys that I’ve lost to. First would definitely be Joe Lauzon.
I’d really like to fight Joe again.”
Varner was not Lauzon’s originally scheduled opponent when they met
last August. He was a late replacement for Terry Etim,
and even though he didn’t get a full training camp for the fight,
he did well. In the first round, he staggered Lauzon with a right
hand and tried to force a stoppage on the ground. Lauzon survived,
though, and outgrappled a tiring Varner in the second and finally
finished him with a triangle choke in the third.
“I’m not going to take anything away from Joe,” Varner said. “Joe’s
awesome and he had an amazing game plan for me. The fact that he
broke me down so technically, to the littlest move, like my head
position on my double leg, and was able to capitalize on it, that’s
incredible. It speaks volumes about him as a fighter and as a
technician. I definitely feel that if we were to fight again and I
had a full training camp, I would win that fight. I think it would
Varner is 2-1 since returning to the UFC in May. Most recently he
Guillard via split decision on Dec. 29 at
UFC 155. The fight had been scheduled for “The Ultimate
Fighter” Season 15 finale two weeks earlier, but it was canceled
after Varner fell violently ill in the locker room. Guillard
attributed the cancellation to Varner being afraid.
“Melvin knew it wasn’t my decision not to fight. It wasn’t,” Varner
said. “Joe Silva came into the bathroom when I was puking my brains
out and told me that the fight was not going to happen. … It was
Keith Kizer and Joe Silva that came into the bathroom and were
like, ‘No, you’re done.’ That wasn’t my decision. The fact that
[Guillard] turned it into a whole circus and got all emotional and
got in my face, I don’t play that game no more. I got involved in
that drama with Donald
Cerrone, and that second fight with Donald, I fought out of
pure emotion. I didn’t fight with any sort of tactical skill or
anything. I just went out there and I fought him and he got the
best of me.”
Varner didn’t make that mistake against Guillard. He learned from
his feud with Cerrone, whom, it turns out, he would also like to
fight again. At the moment, however, Lauzon tops his list.
“I have to earn that fight with Donald, but I think with Lauzon,
that would be a fight that I could arguably fight right away,”
Varner said. “It could be my next fight.”
Listen to the full
interview (beginning at 1:06:38).