Woodley got back to the gym shortly after his successful rematch against Stephen Thompson in early March. Yet, the champion does not feel any sympathy for his next opponent, Maia, who only had his title date confirmed at the end of June after fighting Jorge Masvidal in May.
“He’s had seven fights to get ready for me. He knew where I was. He knew I was at the top. I’m not taking him by surprise,” Woodley told Ariel Helwani on the latest episode of The MMA Hour.
“If we sprung a fight night on you, guess what, you’re going to have to be ready to cover a fight on two days notice. It’s your job.
“If you want to say you’re a professional fighter, and you want to say that you’re the best in the world, you don’t suddenly say, ‘I want a take a vacation,’ or, ‘I want to do a seminar.’
“No, you’re the challenger. You get your ass in gear and you get ready to fight for a world title.”
Woodley also suggested that fighters could sometimes fight better when they take fights on short notice.
“Granted, you’re not going to be 100 percent in fighting shape every day of the week, it’s stupid and it’s not fun for your body, but he has known about me. He has watched film on me. He has watched me compete. He has watched film on me as a competitor the same way I looked at him.
“Four weeks is a very short time for a fighter, but sometimes it’s better. For me, it’s been better because I’m in stupid shape, my conditioning crazy, I’m excited about the fight and I didn’t have to get into my own head.”
Woodley went on to list the advantages of taking fights on short notice.
“I didn’t have to overthink it. I didn’t have to over analyze it. I didn’t over train and I didn’t miscalculate where I was going to be for the fight,” he said.
“Four weeks? Yeah, sometimes I’m better when I cram. When I know I have that date that’s coming up sooner I can push myself a little bit more.
“Guess what? He’s not going to die in there so don’t feel bad for him.”