LAS VEGAS -- Just days away from a possible sixth straight win, Donald Cerrone
is embodying the true spirit of a gambling town, with his eyes already turned on lucky seven.
But it's not what you might expect. Cerrone isn't thinking about asking for a lightweight title shot or even to face one of the division's top contenders. Instead, he says after UFC 137
, he wants to shed a few more pounds to drop to featherweight and face Nam Phan
If you're scratching your head at that one, Cerrone has a very specific reason, and it basically amounts to defending the honor of his camp.
Phan recently beat Cerrone's Team Greg Jackson stablemate and friend Leonard Garcia
, and afterward, he made some comments that apparently rubbed Cerrone the wrong way.
"He said if our coaches were any good they'd teach Leonard to throw straight punches, but [he doesn't] know Leonard," he said. "You could teach him one thing, but as soon as he gets hit, he turns into that wild caveman and that's just how he fights. Nam just wants to talk s---. So I'll show him what our training looks like, 100 percent."
As post-fight comments go, Phan's sounded fairly innocuous, but Cerrone insists he's genuinely ticked off, and he's willing to go to extreme lengths to get the fight.
In fact, Cerrone -- who has a big fight against Dennis Siver
on Saturday -- mentioned just how much of a sacrifice he would have to make in order to get down to the division's limit of 145 pounds.
"Lifestyle change, 100 percent," he said. "I eat a lot of candy, I can't survive without candy. Milk-Duds and Hot Tamales are what I love. It's going to be a lifestyle change. I'm going to have to hire a nutritionist and I'm going to have to be really strict, and I'm going to have to have my friends there to die because I'm going to die. When I was in Houston I was almost 180. It's going to be a lifestyle change. I'm going to have to start walking around at 160-165 and just keep dieting. I'm going to make it. I will make it. The give me that money, I will make it."
Cerrone, who once had a memorable feud with Jamie Varner
, seems to find rivalries in the strangest places. He acknowledged that it's those thoughts that keep him motivated to train, and that he found the challenge of competing in two weight classes intriguing.
"Why couldn't I do them both?" he said. "They're going to say you're 145, you can't do 155? Whoa. Stop, no way. BJ Penn
did it. Why can't I do it? Why can't I go to 145 and let Nam Phan
Even though Penn has gone back and forth between weight classes in his career, he has had long shifts at each weight. Cerrone would be attempting to go back and forth for specific fights, something that's never been done before. Apparently, he has no concerns about how the process of continually bulking up and then slimming down will have on his body. True to his "Cowboy" roots, he'll fire off his guns and let the bullets land where they may.
"I don't know, I don't care," he said. "I'm sure going out and getting drunk hurts me too, but I'm going to do that also."