Patrick Cummins will once again fly all the way down to Brazil for a UFC fight.
The California native, who traveled to Brazil a couple times before to beat Antonio Carlos Junior and Rafael Cavalcante, is slated to take on Glover Teixeira in the co-main event of Sao Paulo’s UFC Fight Night 77 on Nov. 7. Unlike many other fighters, Cummins doesn’t mind going to Brazil to fight.
"It doesn’t bother me. Actually, I like being the guy not everybody is cheering for," Cummins told MMAFighting.com while promoting the event in Sao Paulo. "Gives me more reasons to perform. And every time I’ve been to Brazil has been a great experience, so I’m happy to come down here."
Sao Paulo isn’t as beautiful as Rio de Janeiro, where he recently fought and defeated "Feijao" via TKO at UFC 190, but Cummins welcomes fighting at the Ibirapuera gymnasium, located 19 miles away from where he beat "Cara de Sapato" last December.
"When you come down here for fight week, business comes first," he said with a laugh. "Maybe people envision me going to the beach and hanging out before the fight, but that’s not the reality. I got a job to do and I’m focused on that. Same thing for Sao Paulo."
Speaking of "Feijao", Cummins wasn’t expecting his UFC 190 fight to go like that in August.
"It really felt great, especially to come here and do it. That made it a big statement as well," he said. "Not to mention the fight was pretty crazy. Every time there’s a lot of blood, it’s a back-and-fourth fun fight, people really enjoyed it, so that kind of made it more enjoyable for me.
"Obviously, I came expecting to win, but I never know how to quite do it. We have our strategy going into the fight, but I didn’t know how would all play out. But I knew that my conditioning would definitely be a factor, I could push the pace. We were hoping that at some point he would start to get tired and the door would open for me, and that’s what happened."
Glover Teixeira is another tough challenge in his way, and he sees similarities between them.
"We both have that same mentality, no matter what point of the fight it is, we wanna try to win," Cummins said. "There’s no such thing as give up, and I think when you put two guys like that together, it makes a really exciting match-up. I’m excited to test myself against a guy like that and it’s going to be a fun night."
Teixeira enters the bout coming off a big submission victory over Ovince Saint Preux, who knocked Cummins out in April -- and that impressed "Durkin".
"He had a game plan and stuck to it, and it really turned out really well for him," he said. "I was impressed with that, and I was also impressed with the UFC matching me up against Glover."
Impressed and a bit surprised with the booking, he admits.
"A little bit, yes," said Cummins. "I wasn’t sure what they were going to do with me. I always tell them I want to take a step up, I always want to take a step forward, and it was a surprise that they matched us together, but a pleasant one. I was excited, it’s a good step in the right direction for me."
Cummins will improve to 5-2 under the UFC banner with a victory in November, 3-0 against Brazilians in Brazil, and that might be enough for him to earn a shot at the 205-pound title.
"I definitely think so. It’s a step in the right direction, climbing the ladder," he said. "I think a win here, an impressive win, will definitely put me in that conversation. That’s what I’m hoping for, but obviously the most important thing is this fight. Get through this fight, and let everything else take care of itself."
With Daniel Cormier as UFC light heavyweight champion, targeting the title makes it even more personal.
"I’m always cheering for him just because when it’s my turn to challenge for the belt, I want him to be on the other side so I can collect my revenge and the belt at the same time," said Cummins, who suffered his first professional loss in his UFC debut against Cormier.