When you purchase something through an SB Nation link, Vox Media can earn a commission. See our ethics statement.
If Anthony Pettis is to be concerned about his UFC future, this is news for him.
Pettis (33) was one of the UFC’s most reliable competitors, regardless of whether he started with 155 or 170 (or occasionally even 145). He brought both an exciting style into the octagon and a familiar face to long-time promotion followers. This veteran status has given him security, even if he has struggled to achieve consecutive victories in recent years. However, other UFC stalwarts recently saw their time running out of promotion. UFC President Dana White mentioned that there will likely be more cuts before the end of the year.
Anderson Silva, Yoel Romero and Jussier Formiga are just three top 10 mainstays that are now either in a free agency or under contract with another promotion.
Could Pettis be next if he loses to Alex Morono at UFC Vegas 17 this Saturday?
In an interview with MMA Fighting, Pettis was asked if he was feeling any additional pressure to fight the relatively lesser-known morono due to the recent UFC cuts.
« Not at all, » said Pettis. « To be honest, I couldn’t have taken a fight and only ridden it until next year, but no, I didn’t feel any pressure on it. If the UFC decides they don’t want me on that list anymore – I’ve been with this company for 12 years and I’ve seen everything in this company, from the Fertitta brothers, from the company’s sale to our location At the moment, when When Reebok came in as a sponsor, I was there for all of that. I don’t feel any pressure on it. It’s a business and I understand.
« I always feel like I’m on the chopping block. Every time I fight it’s like I’ll win this fight better and be more impressive, or you never know if your job is still available the next day. These young, hungry people always come. So I don’t feel any pressure on it. ”
If the morono booking raised its eyebrows, it is not because of morono. Last month, The Great White recovered from a loss to Khaos Williams by unanimously deciding against Rhys McKee to win his fourth fight in five games.
Pettis’ résumé is a who’s who of UFC greats, including Max Holloway, Benson Henderson, Donald Cerrone, Nate Diaz, Rafael dos Anjos, Tony Ferguson and UFC Thompson 17-headliner Stephen Thompson, of whom Pettis is in March retired 2019. Morono is still building his legacy, but Pettis sees him as a worthy opponent as any fighter he has met before.
« He’s dangerous, » said Pettis. « I think people don’t give him credit for not having a name yet, but those are the struggles it takes to make a name for yourself. I’ve watched his last fights. He’s not a bum. Nobody in the UFC is a bum. Everyone in the UFC has talent. There are no easy fights in the UFC. He definitely has holes in his game, just like everyone else, but I feel like when I’m in tune with myself and playing on all the cylinders I don’t think anyone could beat me. That is my goal.
“My goal is to go in there, get my thoughts right, and get into that flow right away. I can’t do a lap to get into the river, I can’t do two laps. I have to go in there and immediately have the feeling that I am shooting at all cylinders. ”
Should Pettis triumph on Saturday, he will be in a fascinating position as the morono fight marks the final part of his current UFC contract. A win would put him in the driver’s seat until he re-signs with the promotion he’s had at home since 2011, and also give him leverage should he decide to end that UFC run on his own terms.
Wherever Pettis lands, he has decided that now is not the time to pick fights. If he wants to work his way through to a championship opportunity, this is not done by labeling the marquee names. He wants to climb the ladder the old-fashioned way.
« I think my approach this year isn’t going to look for those big name fights, » Pettis said. « I will build my resume and skills and be ready for a title take. Even if I take this fight, that’s why I’m here. The growth I’ve had this year is an attitude, a spiritual growth, but I’ve had to look back on my career and many of the choices I’ve made in the battles I wanted to fight. I had no reason for it. I thought let me fight Anderson Silva, let me fight « Wonderboy » Thompson, there was no real reason behind it, it was just like, « Yo, what’s the next big thing? »
« I’ve pulled back and focused on my career, what my goals are, what my goals are, and this time I’m going slower. I will be more selective and wiser with my opponents. ”
Pettis’ thoughtful approach to his career is one that he expects to serve him well as he focuses on other professional activities, including his management company, Show Time Sports Entertainment Group. At 26, Pettis was a UFC champion, but looking back he sees a multitude of mistakes he made along the way and he hopes to help aspiring fighters avoid those pitfalls.
What advice would Pettis have on the way to a decisive battle for those who want to become the next « Showtime »?
« Don’t be the next Anthony Pettis, » Pettis said. « I’ve made a lot of mistakes in my career and I am learning from those mistakes, but I want to give these guys the opportunity to be the best version of themselves. « .
« So this is my biggest advice. Find the right formula that will make you the best version of yourself. ”
Anthony Pettis, Ultimate Fighting Championship, Alex Morono, Mixed Martial Arts
World News – CA – Anthony Pettis is feeling no added pressure to win after veteran cuts
Donnez votre avis et abonnez-vous pour plus d’infos
Vidéo du jour: