On this week’s Majority Draw Radio, hosts Ryan McKinnell and Danny Acosta discuss the UFC-Reebok uniform marriage, Brock Lesnar playing the field between UFC and Bellator, and the gold up for grabs this weekend at UFC 181 between welterweights Johny Hendricks (c) and Robbie Lawler and lightweights Anthony Pettis (c) and Gilbert Melendez.
“Bigg Rigg” Hendricks answered McKinnell’s questions at a media roundtable. The Texas-based champ discussed fighting Lawler a second time, old wrestling rival and ONE FC champ Ben Askren, and how he handles reigning atop the UFC’s welterweight division.
“I’m gonna have to take some punches,” Hendricks said of mixing it up with Lawler again. “I’m gonna have to take some things and that’s sort of the way I’m looking at this fight. It’s the first rematch of my career too. I had many in wrestling. This is going to be huge for my career because if I can go out there and put on a display, make a 180 and turn this into a totally different fight, then people might sit there and say, ‘I have to beat him on the first try.'”
Beyond the task at hand at UFC 181, the Oklahoma State NCAA National Champion refused to engage in conversation regarding Askren.
“I’m not gonna call Dana White and do stuff to fight Askren. I’m the type of guy, if you deserve it, you got it. Does that make sense? He had a chance. He failed at it.”
There are too many fighters to worry about inside the UFC to think about Askren, according to the southpaw titleholder. Hendricks listed (in order) Rory MacDonald, Tyron Woodley, Hector Lombard, Matt Brown, and Carlos Condit (depending on how and when he returns from injury). Hendricks knows he could drive himself crazy thinking about the competition, so he tends not to do that.
“My head would be wrapped around this for, realistically, I could be wrapped around this two years, going, who do I have to worry about?”