Donald Cerrone had thoughtsabout retiring as he was preparing to face Evan Dunham at UFC 167. Had he not won the fight, “Cowboy” said he was ready to hang up the gloves, mainly because he lost the fire that once drove his passion to fight.
Recently, however, Cerrone said he’s ready to come back with an all new focus. The drive to fight is back, he said, and this time he plans on being more responsible with his finances.
“What really happened is I spent all my money and now I’m broke,” Cerrone told Majority Draw Radio. “Now I only got one choice, and that’s to fight.
“It’s hard to have money in the bank and want something and then not get it. I just (expletive) buy it. I have no idea what saving money is. It has nothing to do with wanting to go broke. I wish I had millions in the bank; I’d never go broke. Let’s get that belt and get millions in the bank.”
The downslope, as Cerrone referred to it, began around the time he lost his UFC 141 fight against Nate Diaz. Since then, the Jackson’s MMA standout said he began to taper off in his training, being present physically, but lacking the mental focus that he had in years prior.
The problem, Cerrone revealed, was that he reached a comfort zone and remained there for an extended period of time.
“What happened was I got real comfortable financially, and just kind of let off everything — my training, I lost my fire,” he said. “I was training, going through the motions.”
Even as he collected a notable win over K.J. Noons at UFC 160 last May, Cerrone said he was missing something.
“I was fighting, but didn’t have that inner kill in me,” he said.
Now Cerrone wants back in the cage, and desires those millions of dollars that he said comes with a championship belt. His next fight is at UFC on Fox 10 on Jan. 25, then he targets UFC 171, the pay-per-view card in Dallas headlined by Johny Hendricks and Robbie Lawler.
Beyond his next opponent, Adriano Martins, the most willing competitor to fight the 155-pound Cerrone is Cole Miller, a featherweight that earned the Submission of the Night award at UFC Fight Night 35 earlier this week. Miller has long desired a match with Cerrone because of some personal differences, and he called out Cowboy just moments after his win in Duluth, Ga., asking him to drop to 145 pounds for the fight to happen.
“I’m gonna send Mike Dolce over to you and you can put the bill on me,” Miller said in his post-fight interview this past Wednesday. “He’s probably gonna tell you the same thing I’m gonna tell you: Lay off them cheeseburgers and Twinkies, homie.”
Unfortunately for Miller, the timing for the two to meet in Dallas might not work after all, as Miller broke his hand in the UFC Fight Night 35 win.
But if both heal and recover well enough, Miller can get what he wants on a later card, and Cerrone can grab yet another payday in an effort to stay thoroughly active in 2014.
“We’re going for six this year, brother,” Cerrone said, referencing how many fights he plans on in 2014. “I like money.”
(Follow @Erik_Fontanez on Twitter)
© 2014 MMA Weekly All Rights Reserved.