The “Young Assassin” Melvin Guillard (29-8-2) feels he is destined to one day capture the UFC lightweight title and after winning five straight bouts, it’s hard not to envision it a title shot in the near future.
Guillard was once thought of as a fighter with wasted potential, but after heading to Greg Jackson’s camp in Albuquerque, N.M., the 28-year-old has made a believer of his harshest critics after defeating the likes of Evan Dunham, Shane Roller, Jeremy Stephens, and Ronys Torres.
Moving forward to this Saturday night, Guillard feels that his confidence and his maturity as a fighter has lead to his current success. He will look to make it six in a row when he meets Joe Lauzon in Houston at UFC 136.
“I was just as motivated back then as I am now,” Guillard told MMAWeekly Radio.
“Nothing’s changed. If anything has changed, it’s my attitude about my personal life, growing up and maturing. I knew I had to mature as a person and I had to make sure I matured as a fighter and I think it’s paying off. The UFC has given me a lot of credit right now. They’ve given me a lot more credit than they have done in the past.
“I didn’t change altogether. I wanted to keep certain personalities about myself that made me become the fighter that I am. I kept those things and the negative things that I did, I got rid of them. I not only gained with the UFC, but I gained a lot of fans after the last couple of fights.”
Heading into Houston, the Albuquerque resident has put some added pressure on himself in his fight with Lauzon. Guillard says he has put himself on a pedestal where he not only has to outperform his opponent; he has to outperform champions like Frankie Edgar and Jose Aldo and everyone else who is on the card.
“I’m putting myself on a pedestal for this fight and I’m going in not only wanting to win, but I want to outperform everyone. You got Jose Aldo fighting Kenny Florian and just for you all to know, I’m pulling for Jose Aldo to knock him out. You got ‘Lil Heathen’ fighting Pettis and you got the champion fighting Gray Maynard, so I’m definitely challenging myself.
“I also have my teammate Brian Stann fighting Chael Sonnen. So me and Brian are challenging each other to get these knockout bonuses. We’re already talking smack to each other what we’re going to knock our opponents out with so that we can guarantee the win.
“I’m making sure that this knockout will be spectacular. I guarantee it.”