When you consider that Alexander Gustafsson had to withdraw from his highly anticipated rematch with Jon Jones last September, one wouldn’t be surprised if the Swedish star said 2014 wasn’t too great. Well, clearly “The Mauler” doesn’t mind dealing with some adversity.
As you likely recall, Gustafsson locked up a rematch with Jones last March, by taking out Jimi Manuwa. Jones-Gustafsson was set to go down in September, but the latter went down with a knee injury.
Then, Jones got injured as well, and his bout with Daniel Cormier got pushed to January. Due to the delay, the UFC moved forward and booked Gustafsson to fight Anthony Johnson today at UFC on FOX 14. If Gustafsson loses, then he’ll also lose his chance to avenge his defeat to Jones.
Well, despite all this, here is what Gustafsson had to say about his year, while talking to UFC.com recently:
“There were some ups and downs, but mainly it was good for me,” Gustafsson said. “I had one fight (against Jimi Manuwa in March), I won that fight, and then I had a great summer. I started training for the fight (with Jones), then I got injured and I was working on that for a while, then I got back to the gym and continued working and training. I stayed positive knowing that I was getting better with my skills, getting better as a fighter overall, and that’s what I’ve been focusing on. And then when I heard about the fight (with Johnson), I was very happy about that and everything has been easy since then. Now I’m just looking forward to the fight.”
Yes, more than a few people are also pretty pumped for today’s scrap…It definitely has the potential to be an instant classic.
UFC on FOX 14 will be hosted by the Tele2 Arena in Stockholm, Sweden.
In the co-headliner, Dan Henderson will take on middleweight Gegard Mousasi. The main card will also feature a pivotal light-heavyweight fight between contenders Phil Davis and Ryan Bader.