by Damon Martin – MMAWeekly.com
life animosity between Ultimate Fighting Championship lightweights Rich “No
Love” Clementi and Melvin Guillard came to a boiling point when the two finally
met inside the Octagon last Saturday night at UFC 79.
result was Clementi pulling off a submission win forcing a tap out from
Guillard by way of rear naked choke, and after the fight was over the two were
still going at each other, which verified the dislike was mutual and very real.
that was quite obvious to just about 100% of the viewers,” said Clementi about
the obvious tension between the two fighters.
fight ever started, the Internet was a buzz about the long rivalry between the
two fighters, but Clementi insisted on staying quiet beforehand and letting the
fight speak for itself.
honest, it’s not me,” he said about his lack of trash talk before the fight.
“I’m smart enough to know that anything can happen in this game and when you
talk like that and it doesn’t come out your way it just makes you look like an
implemented a very strong game plan, taking the fight to the ground early where
he was able to dominate and lock on the fight ending submission.
“I’m a true
MMA fighter,” he stated. “I can stand-up and bang with the best and my wrestling
is complete and my jiu-jitsu’s there, so that’s what makes a guy like me a
little bit dangerous. I’m going to take a fight where my opponent is the
weakest no matter where it is.”
emotions ran high between the two fighters prior to, during and after the fight
when Clementi made a gesture towards Guillard after the referee stopped the
bout and separated the fighters. Clementi says he didn’t let the emotion play
into the fight and instead used that tactic against his opponent.
much at all,” he said about emotion playing into his mindset going into the
bout. “If anything I was using it against him. I look at it as kind of
setting him up for failure.
“I think I
put that in one of my UFC interviews is that you’ll probably see maybe about
just a few seconds of that come out and that will be at the end of the fight
and surely enough that’s what happened with me. The whole crotch shot thing
and stuff, that was just the last bit of ‘now my emotion’s here’ and I
displayed what I wanted to do and that type of deal.”
past, many fighters have been able to settle their differences inside the
Octagon and walk away satisfied with a rivalry settled, but Clementi doesn’t
expect any friendly situations with Guillard to arise in the near future.
absolutely sure we’ll never like each other, that’s the case why we had to
With a big
win over Guillard now behind him, Clementi is now looking forward to a very
busy 2008 and a stacked lightweight division to compete in.
“I love fighting
in the UFC,” he said. “The UFC’s really taking care of me and I appreciate
that, giving me an opportunity. Really what I would like to see for me is just
consistency. I want another year of putting guys away and I’d like to put my
name up there when guys talk about the upper echelon in that division.”