Whether at 145 or 155 Pounds, TUF ‘The Smashes’ Coach Ross Pearson Wants Big Fights

September 17, 2012
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Pearson vs Assuncao UFC 141 When Team U.K. coach Ross Pearson meets his Australian counterpart, George Sotiropoulos, at UFC on FX 6 in Australia on Dec. 15 (Dec. 14 in the U.S.), the 27-year-old expects his rival to struggle against his wrestling.

“The fight against George is definitely a ‘Striker vs Grappler’ match,” Pearson recently told MMAWeekly.com in Sydney. “I feel that my biggest advantage is my wrestling.

“I think George will underestimate my wrestling and he will have a hell of a time trying to take it down. I have trained with some of the best wrestlers in the world at Alliance, and I think George will struggle to get the fight where he wants it and he will become frustrated.

“We flew out from LA (to begin filming TUF: The Smashes) and it’s been the best adjustment in time I’ve had. Last time it took me a week to become accustomed, but I was fine within a day.”

Pearson said it was “surreal” seeing his U.K. team training in the TUF gym, as just three years ago it was him vying for a UFC contract.

“Our team has a high level of skills and they’re very ready to fight,” commented Pearson. “They want to make a career for themselves. That was me three years ago. It just shows how far I’ve come. I’m honored to coach these guys.”

Over recent years, Pearson has always been one to drift between 145 and 155 pounds, but whether it be at featherweight or lightweight, where he previously won TUF, the U.K. fighter wants to fight at home and make a charge towards a title shot.

“It has put me in a position where I have to perform and prove myself. I can do the cut to 145 pounds, or I don’t have to cut if I fight at 155 pounds,” Pearson said. “To me, weight doesn’t mean anything. I just want big fights and to be at the top of my weight class; whatever it will be.

“I compete best when my back is against the wall and my true instinct as a fighter comes out.”

TUF Team Australia vs Team UK “The Smashes” premieres Wednesday, Sept. 19, on FX in Australia at 7:30 p.m. AEST. It will also be aired on ESPN UK  at midnight (local time) on Wednesday, Sept. 19. 

(Follow @AndrewPMMA on Twitter)Josh Fares also contributed to this article. 


  • elguapo

    I like Pearson, seems a decent bloke. Nice to see a Brit pay some real attention to improving their wrestling too. He did the right thing moving from the UK to the States to join a top camp, wish more British fighters would do the same.

  • Mario

    Ross Pearson isn’t somebody to get excited for. I wouldn’t get my hopes up for this guy. The same could be said for his opponent.

    Ross won’t get ‘big fights’ if he keeps losing them.

    Just a thought..

    • elguapo

      Don’t get me wrong, I don’t think he’ll ever get anywhere near title contention. I don’t think you’ll ever see an english UFC champ unless the wrestling issue is addressed. And unfortunately if you’re to excel at wrestling then you need to start learning early in high school, aged 13 or 14 I’d say, and you don’t get that in England.

      I think Pearson can play a role in the UFC though, solid mid-card / preliminary fighter, which despite some people’s opinions on here, is a really important position in the UFC.

  • DrkDisciple

    I agree with you 100% losses against Swanson, Barbosa and Miller dont really show that he deserves “big fights”

  • Pierson always puts on a good fight. He reminds me kind of a Kenny Florian type in the way that he puts together a couple good wins…then he steps up in competition and looses. I think he has potential but he needs to string together a few good wins…then he can step up in competition.