Most MMA fans are pretty excited to see Benson Henderson and Anthony Pettis swap strikes for a second time at UFC 164, but a featherweight bout between Dustin Poirier and Erik Koch could be the scrap that ends up dominating post-fight, water cooler chats (if those still happen). The fight features the #7 ranked Poirier taking on the #10 ranked Koch, who at one point was scheduled to battle Jose Aldo, until injury scrapped him from the bout. In addition, it includes two men who certainly don’t have reps for being involved in boring, conservative fights.
Of course, since UFC 164 will go down in Milwaukee, Koch will have the hometown crowd behind him, as the he trains out of the city’s famous Roufusport facility. While speaking to The Underground’s Jack Brown recently, however, here’s what Poirier had to say about Koch and fighting “New Breed” behind “enemy lines.”
I’m excited to go out there behind enemy lines and do work. I feel like I’m more prepared than I’ve ever been. I’m in a comfortable place with myself and with fighting right now, even with coming off a loss against Cub Swanson. I didn’t have time to prepare for that fight. I kind of jumped into it when his opponent got hurt. Four weeks wasn’t long enough. Looking back at it now, I probably shouldn’t have taken the fight. It was another learning experience. Sucks to have another loss on my record.
I’m growing as a fighter and I’m growing in this sport. I’m prepared to beat Eric Koch anywhere that the fight goes. Whether we kickbox, or we wrestle, or we hit the ground and do Jiu-Jitsu, it doesn’t matter to me. I feel like I’m better than him everywhere. There’s no pressure for me going behind enemy lines to fight him. We can set the cage up at his family reunion and I’ll beat him up. It doesn’t matter to me.
It should be a doozy of a tilt, and it’s a big fight for both guys, since they’re both coming off losses. Koch was taken out by Ricardo Lamas in January and Poirier dropped a UD loss to Cub Swanson in February.
Stay tuned to MMA Frenzy.com for all your UFC news and coverage.