Eddie Wineland fights to win.
And when he steps into the Octagon at UFC 155 on Saturday night, he sees that same “fight to win” type of fighter in Brad Pickett, his opponent.
“There’s people that come to ‘fight not to lose’ and then there’s people that come ‘to fight to win.’ I think Brad and myself are both people that come to fight to win,” Wineland said recently on MMAWeekly Radio.
That makes for a dangerous fight. Wineland is going to have to be at the top of his game every moment of the fight in order to walk out of the cage with a victory. But that’s how he wants it.
He doesn’t want to rack up 10 easy victories to try and get to a title shot. Wineland wants to fight the top fighters on deck now, put on the best fights that he knows how, and let the chips fall where they may.
“I think (Pickett’s) been fighting just as long as I have. He’s experienced, he’s smart, he’s a dangerous fighter,” said Wineland. “I’m not looking for easy fights; I’m looking to test myself. I want the best of the best. I think that’s both where we’re at. I think we’re both gonna go in and put a good show on.”
That’s why, despite back to back losses to Urijah Faber and Joseph Benavidez to start off his UFC career, Wineland believes he and Pickett are both just a step or two away from a possible bantamweight title shot.
“I think the winner of this is very deserving of a No. 1 contendership spot or No. 1 contendership fight,” Wineland told MMAWeekly.com.
Whether the winner is deemed next up for a title shot or not, however, Wineland is happy just to keep plowing forward. He has goals, to be sure, but the key goal is to keep on fighting.
“At the end of the day, as long as I’m fighting, I’m happy,” stated Wineland. “I do want the belt. I’m chasing the belt. So as long as I keep fight and I keep winning, they can’t really deny me that.
“I’m happy with the fight. I’m not here for easy fights. I want to test myself. I want to see what I’m capable of. At the end of the day, I’m gonna be there to have my hand raised.”