Once thought of as the future of the sport, Vera hit a roadblock in his last three fights for the UFC. In his last fight, he initially lost to Thiago Silva via unanimous decision, but the result was later amended to a no contest due to Silva providing a fake urine sample during a drug test for the fight.
The 34-year-old is ecstatic to get a second chance. The reset begins on Saturday night, when he meets TUF alumni Eliot Marshall (10-3) at UFC 137 in Las Vegas.
“It’s not even a brand new chapter, it’s a whole new book, let’s go read this one,” Vera told MMAWeekly Weekend Radio.
“This for sure is going to be a way better book. The happy ending is going to be dope on this one. The other was kind of sad, kind of a let down, the finishing chapter was (expletive). This one is going to be dope. This is going to be a long book. I’m super excited.”
Vera feels that, because he’s so dangerous standing, opponents in the past wouldn’t even test themselves on the feet with him. He feels that Marshall is no different. The Lloyd Irvin student believes that Marshall will try to employ a Greg Jackson strategy of trying to drain him via wrestling and conditioning.
“I know his conditioning is going to be good and I know he’s going to want to wrestle me. My past three fights, starting with Randy, nobody wanted to stand with me. I for sure am aware of that. It’s not a surprise what Greg Jackson’s team brings to the table now. I know what’s going to happen, so everything I’ve been doing is to counteract that.
“I’ve been at the ODU wrestling team training with college guys who are grinding so hard that they can stay in school. I went back as far as I could and dug as far back as I could into my old bag of tricks and got them in. It’s a comforting feeling to understand what’s been missing, this is what’s been lost, this is what’s been found, let’s get it in.”