It’s UFC Fight Night Pittsburgh this Saturday and UFC welterweight Mike Perry will be looking for his eleventh career knockout in the co-main event.
Perry was last seen in action back in April this year when he defeated Jake Ellenberger with a devastating elbow that left him unconscious in the centre of the Octagon.
Speaking exclusively to MMAUNO.com ahead of his clash with Thiago Alves this weekend, Perry reflected on his last win.
“I think it’s one of the best fight finishes that people have seen this year, sure,” Perry said. “To knock someone out in the middle of the Octagon and to be out on contact, there’s a few knockouts like that, but I don’t think there are many like my elbow.
“I don’t know how legit [of a claim] that is, but I’ve seen a few knockout of the year lists and it’s right up there.”
Setting the trap
Before knocking Ellenberger out, Perry defended several takedown attempts and got back to his feet quickly on the odd occasion when he was taken to the mat successfully. Perry said this isn’t something that caught him by surprise and that he’s getting used to guys not wanting to trade with him on the feet.
“Yeah I’m getting used to the guys always wanting to take me down,” Perry said. “It’s kinda of a game of willing your opponent, getting them comfortable, doing it again, making then more comfortable, then BAM, I end it. You try to just set them up for stuff they don’t see coming next.
“You got to keep your tricks different though. You can’t just have a bag of tricks you reuse over and over.
“I might have a few new tricks to show on Saturday.”
Colby Covington can get some
Tyron Woodley is sitting proudly at the top of the pile at 170-pounds and he’s no shortage of contenders vying for his crown. Perry spoke about how people are climbing the ranks and making noise and he highlighted Colby Covington as a man using his mouth rather than having exciting fights.
“I think we’re all mimicking Conor McGregor,” Perry said. “Just a little bit though, we’re all trying to do it our own way. I appreciate what he’s done, but I’m just trying to do things my own way. Obviously Conor’s philosophy worked because it was natural and it’s pretty natural for me to do my way.
“I could care less about all these other guys talking s*** because I know when these guys stand in front of me, they back down. If Colby Covington is talking s*** about me saying I’ve had easy fights, yeah man, I just make them look easy. You just lay on people and [are] going to decisions. You don’t wanna throw no f***ing hands.
“You wanna throw hands with me boy you gonna be shooting for a takedown real quick–I promise you that.”
“I mean, how dangerous is a fight with Colby anyway? How dangerous is him laying on top of me hugging me and stuff. That’s not dangerous. The couple of fights where I’ve had to fight grapplers are the safest fights I’ve ever been in. They take me down and lay on top of me. I’m like, here damn go with this and I’m strong as hell.
“You might be able to get me down, but you sure as s*** ain’t holding me there.”
Chuck Liddell s***
Perry doesn’t fear having his back to the mat, but if there’s one thing he loves it’s showing off his hands.
“I go out there with a solid kickboxing stance looking to break your face with one punch,”
“There ain’t no body giving me reason to use this jiu-jitsu,” Perry said. “All I’ll say is, if they’re on top of me throwing shots then you could see a submission–I have them. I’m more dangerous off my back than I am on top and that’s the truth. Maybe I’ll never use it. Maybe I’ll get so good at stuffing takedowns and knocking people out that I’ll never use it. It’s always here if I need it.
“That’s Chuck Liddell s***.”
Choosing whose life to ruin next
Perry faces Alves this weekend and he’s convinced it’s just another step on his way to the top. Who he wants to fight next isn’t something he’s planned though and he’s a believer that his path will develop organically.
“I think I’m getting high up there in the division,” Perry said. “I got a lot of people talking about me, even the champ talks about me so that’s pretty cool. The hardest part is figuring out what I’m going to say after I beat the next guy. They are going to be wanting me to call someone else out and I’m just like, if you guys want me to pick the next guy whose life I’m going to ruin, I better sit down and study which fighter deserves to get knocked out by me.
“I want a tough fight and I don’t want a guy who’s on a losing streak. I want guys that evenly match up with me. I got ten wins and ten knockouts so I want dangerous opponents who come to fight. I don’t know who I want to fight next because I can’t imagine animosity. I can’t just imagine up a reason why I want to knock these guys out other than the only one that exists, which is, I’m better than them and I deserve the opportunity to prove it.
“That’s just God’s plan for me.”
Grim Reaper Perry
While happy to let his future play out naturally, Perry is well aware of some of the names he might meet on his way up the rankings. The consequences of facing and beating these men isn’t lost on him.
“I got a bunch of names on the list who I could call out,” Perry said. “I know ‘Valhalla’ [Emil Weber Meek] wanted to fight, Robbie Lawler and Donald Cerrone, those are both money fights but I don’t want to ruin their lives. Cerrone and Lawler are on their way out. I’m probably going to retire Thiago Alves.
“How many guys do they want me to retire in this division. I’m feeling kinda bad.
“I’m feeling like the damn Grim Reaper over here retiring these old men.”
“They’ll change my name to ‘Grim Reaper’ Perry when I’m done with this division.”
Perry faces Alves in the co-main event of UFC Fight Night Pittsburgh this Saturday.