Mike Pierce expects a repeat performance against Paul Bradley. | Photo: Sherdog.com

Before their UFC careers began, Mike Pierce outpointed Paul Bradley in an April 2009 encounter in Oaks, Pa.

Now they’re set to meet again Saturday at UFC on Fox 1. Ahead of the bout, Pierce joined the Sherdog Radio Network’s “Beatdown” show to discuss his opponent, the welterweight division and more.

On Bradley: “He’s a tough guy. He’s got a strong wrestling background -- a two-time All-American out of Iowa. He’s a guy I’ve actually fought once before, before we made it into the UFC. We both kind of neutralized each other on the wrestling side of things, so there was dirty boxing and fighting from the outside and clinch work. I got the better of the exchanges and got a unanimous decision out of it. I see this fight pretty much going the same way. I’m going to go out there and put the pressure on and take it to him and get my hand raised in the end.”

On how Luke Rockhold and Rafael Natal beat Bradley: “Both of those guys utilized their footwork and their quickness, moving in and out, and their skills standing up to take advantage of openings. I plan on doing the same thing and doing that in the clinch, and if we decide to play the wrestling game, I’m going to do that as well. I think I have something for him at every angle of the game.”

On the personal issues he was dealing with when he fought Johny Hendricks: “It kind of started once I landed there in Philadelphia. I had some stuff going on in my personal life. I just found out my girlfriend was pregnant. There potentially were some complications with that, so I was kind of freaking out about that. I tried to keep that out of my mind. It was one of those things that was really kind of hard to segregate away from the fight that I had coming up. I hate to admit it, but it did kind of play into it a little while I was out there. I just didn’t feel as focused or as into the fight. I could see how the judges scored it the way they did, but I don’t believe the better fighter won the fight.”

On who will win the Dec. 30 bout between Hendricks and Fitch: “I honestly think Fitch is probably going to win. Both are good wrestlers obviously, but I think Fitch is a little more well rounded. His standup game’s a little more crisp. He’s been doing it a long time. I don’t know that Johny’s going to have enough time in this camp to really build on those tools that he already has to beat a guy like Jon Fitch. But you know, I think it will be a close fight. I think it will be a grind, but at the end of the day, I think Jon Fitch is going to get the decision.”

On how Nick Diaz and Carlos Condit match up against Georges St. Pierre: “I think between the two, Nick Diaz has the greater chance. That guy always comes to fight. Everyone knows that he’s a gamer. He’s tough. He has the cardio to get in there and last five rounds, just like GSP does. I think that would be a much more interesting fight. I think the odds will also be a lot closer. I don’t think there were too many people that were looking at the Condit-GSP fight that were really banking on Condit having a whole lot of chance there. I mean, Condit is a good fighter too, but I think Diaz brings a lot more threat and a lot more things to the table that would give GSP problems.”

On how he will beat Bradley: “If I can finish him, I’m going to finish him, but just like last time, he’s a tough guy. I see at least a 30-27 unanimous [decision] again.”

Listen to the full interview (beginning at 1:13:28).

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