by Jeff Cain – MMAWeekly.com
Sean Sherk knows what it’s like to be the smaller guy in a fight. He’s spent much of his mixed martial arts career playing that role and overcoming the obstacle of size. At UFC 98, his opponent, Frankie Edgar, faces the task of having to topple a bigger opponent, but Sherk doesn’t think size is going to be a factor in the fight.
“I don’t think my size is going to be a factor,” said the former UFC lightweight titleholder. “I think it’s going to come down to a skill factor and experience.”
“The size thing, I don’t think it’s going to make that much difference because I’ve seen him fight some pretty good guys at 155,” Sherk commented about Edgar. “He’s never been manhandled. Even Gray Maynard, he gave Gray a hell of a good fight until the third round. Gray was a lot bigger too and they’re both real, strong wrestlers too. You look at Spencer Fisher, Tyson Griffin, Hermes Franca; he’s been in there with some real tough guys, and he’s never any problems before as far as size goes.”
Sherk expects to enter the Octagon on Saturday night weighing what he’d normally compete at as a welterweight, 175-pounds. The drop to compete in the lightweight division was a good decision according to the Minnesota Martial Arts Academy trained fighter, but not a decision based on necessity, but rather one based on opportunity.
“The reason for me dropping (to lightweight) was because I was off the title shot,” admitted the 35-year old mixed martial artist. “If I was never off for the title shot, if the lightweight class never came back, I would have never game down. I was off for the title shot, so…”
Discussing cutting weight and making the 155-pound limit, Sherk said, “It’s rough. I’m not going to lie. Cutting twenty pounds isn’t easy.”
However, the longtime wrestler has the dehydration game down to science. “I have thirty hours to recover, so by fight time it will feel like I never even cut a pound.”
“I actually feel better fighting at 155 because my diet has always been strict, but now my diet has gotten tighter. I feel like I’m a little more agile and my cardio got a little bit better,” stated Sherk. “I think 155 was a real good move for me. Plus, I’m fighting guys my size.”
Clearly size does matter.