NEW YORK — With UFC 205 just days away, and open workouts at Madison Square Garden complete, the remaining athletes on the biggest fight card in MMA history spoke to media before the historic event.
Chris Weidman on returning to championship form
“I’m gonna go in there the way I usually went in there before I lost. So you learn from your losses … this is the biggest fight of my life because this is my redemption to get back to the title. I win this fight, I’m fighting for the title.”
Frankie Edgar on fighting at a weight deficit for the opportunity to face Conor McGregor
“[I] absolutely would. I’ll give up 30 pounds if I have to, 40 pounds. I’m down for that.”
Jeremy Stephens on his New York Debut
“Savageness dude … it’s gonna be relentless, it’s gonna be ugly, it’s gonna be a war, and I plan on embarking a piece of this history, trying to get my name on the monuments … I’m fighting like there’s a gun to my head, like there’s a gun to my family’s head. This is a do-or-die situation … there’s no other choice … my goal is Frankie Edgar come Saturday night, November 12. I plan on having a lifetime performance, an iconic performance.”
Khabib Nurmagomedov on McGregor mania and why he’s going for Alvarez in the main event
“I think UFC only think about Conor, Conor, Conor … I [don’t] understand. Beginning of year he tap[ped], end of the year he fight for the title … how are you the greatest if you all the time tap, tap, tap, tap. Two, three times in his career he tapped.”
“How he become greatest? Muhammad Ali greatest. He never tapped, he never quit, he never gave up … Mike Tyson greatest. This situation is crazy … I hope Eddie Alvarez wins … because Conor no take this fight. If Conor wins, this makes my situation bad because … he take different, easy fight, like striking fight. Why he need all 25 minutes defensive wrestling? He don’t like this.”
Michael Johnson on his relationship with former training partner Eddie Alvarez, and potentially fighting the UFC lightweight champion
“No complications, it would just be very hard to cut off the friendship and the bond that me and Eddie have because he is a true friend and it’s hard to find true friends in this business. We’ve been teammates. I consider him like a brother to me. I’ve been through him and his hard times, and vice versa … if that fight with Eddie happens, that’s something I’ll worry about, but right now, I’m here to support him in his defense”
Jim Miller on making his twenty-fifth UFC appearance and his six UFC submissions
“I’ve made a career on being aggressive inside the Octagon and taking fights. I’ve never been the type that tried to pick opponents, so that’s pretty cool to be the veteran among this card, to be the guy that’s been here the most. I’ve tried to leave my mark on this sport so far, and I plan on leaving a mark on Saturday.”
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