MENU
#Justin Buchholz #Duane Ludwig #Ramsey Nijem #Julian Lane #Conor McGregor #UFC 211 #Nate Diaz #Dhiego Lima #Hayder Hassan #Jon Jones #Rory MacDonald #UFC 202 #Bellator 179 #Cody Garbrandt #Joanna Jedrzejczyk


Javier Vazquez (above) will face Joe Stevenson at UFC Live 4. | Photo: Dave Mandel/Sherdog.com


Javier Vazquez and Joe Stevenson have known each other a long time.

Both are veterans of the Southern California MMA circuit. Both were competing in King of the Cage earlier in the decade.

Now they’re finally scheduled to fight June 26 in Pittsburgh at UFC Live 4.

“Joe and I are friends,” Vazquez said recently on the Sherdog Radio Network’s “Beatdown” show. “Plus he was fighting up a weight. I wasn’t really concerned about him dropping down, but now that he did -- a lot of these lightweights think that the grass is greener on the other side at featherweight. I think some of them are going to find out that we’re just as tough as the guys at 155. We just happen to weigh a little bit less.”

A winner of the second season of “The Ultimate Fighter,” Stevenson eventually earned a lightweight title shot but lost to B.J. Penn. He is moving to 145 pounds after losing three straight at 155. Vazquez has followed his career.

“I’ve watched Joe fight for years and I haven’t seen him evolve a whole lot,” Vazquez said. “I think he’s a good fighter. I think he’s a great guy, but let’s be honest. He hasn’t really evolved that much in the three years he’s been in the UFC. He’s the same fighter. Sometimes he comes in there in a little bit better shape than others. That’s about it.”

Stevenson’s submission game is formidable, though. Vazquez acknowledged that he will have to be cautious of his opponent’s ability to finish.

“There’s no question I respect his submission skills,” Vazquez said. “I think he’s got good leg locks. I think he’s got very good elbows and I think he’s got good ground-and-pound. I think he’s a good fighter and stylistically, he’s a very tough fight for me, but I think I’m a little bit better in every aspect of the game.”

However, Stevenson is training with a camp that knows Vazquez’s game well. In fact, he’s been training with Millennia, Vazquez’s former gym.

“I can’t control what they do,” Vazquez said. “As far as bad blood, it doesn’t surprise me. If I were him, I’d probably go there too. They were my teammates for 12 years. That’s probably his best bet. The only problem is, I don’t think they have anybody there that can beat me. So I don’t think him being there is going to do him any good.”

Vazquez also believes he knows his former camp as well as they know him.

“I know exactly what they’re telling him,” he said. “I know exactly what he’s working on. … From the time I left that gym, I’m a much better fighter. I’m a much more well-rounded mixed martial artist, and my conditioning is much better. Any game plan that they can come up with, I’m going to nullify it.”

Listen to the full interview (beginning at 1:00:03).

view original article >>
Report here if this news is invalid.

Related News

'Big' John McCarthy says weight-cutting more dangerous than PEDs in MMA

  • 28 days ago
  • 9 views

Veteran MMA referee John McCarthy doesn’t believe fighters should be able to dope. But when it comes to the sport’s health risks, he sees weight-cutting as an even bigger issue.Filed under: Featured, read news >>

UFC Unfiltered: Justin Buchholz, Joe Stevenson

  • 28 days ago
  • 1 views

Team Alpha Male Head Coach Justin Buchholz calls in to talk about The Ultimate Fighter: Redemption, whether there's a tape of Cody KOing TJ and more. Later, Joe "Daddy" Stevenson calls in. Plus, Jim read news >>

'Everything is possible' to Francis Ngannou, maybe even a UFC title shot this year

  • 23 days ago
  • 13 views

LAS VEGAS – UFC heavyweight contender Francis Ngannou doesn’t have a fight lined up. First thing’s first – he needs to get acclimated.Filed under: Featured, Featured Videos, News, UFC, Videos read news >>

Dustin Poirier Says Eddie Alvarez is Going to Get 'Whipped' at UFC 211 | MMAWeekly.com

  • 14 days ago
  • 3 views

UFC lightweight Dustin Poirier doesn’t shy away from the fact that he can be an emotional fighter. On more than one occasion his emotions got the better of him. read news >>

Are we ready to believe in Stipe Miocic yet? And if not, will breaking a record really matter?

  • 11 days ago
  • 9 views

Stipe Miocic doesn’t seem to be the fearsome heavyweight champion we expected, but now that he’s one win away from breaking a long-standing UFC record after his TKO victory at UFC 211, are we ready t read news >>

Dustin Poirier wants compensation and Eddie Alvarez rematch after UFC 211 no-contest

  • 10 days ago
  • 98 views

UFC lightweight Dustin Poirier doesn’t care about the no-contest on his record. He cares about the money lost when that call was made. Filed under: Featured, News, UFC read news >>

Bellator 180's Ryan Couture gets a fresh start, with a little nightmare to go along with it

  • 3 days ago
  • 8 views

Ryan Couture doesn’t need any time to decide the worst part of moving up in weight. Filed under: Bellator, News read news >>

Rory MacDonald: 'Bellator: NYC' title fight between Douglas Lima, Lorenz Larkin a pick'em

  • 2 days ago
  • 9 views

Rory MacDonald doesn’t care who he challenges for the Bellator welterweight championship. However, he’s sending fair warning that whoever his opponent is should be ready for some serious pain.Filed u read news >>